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10 July 201521:17

PREVIEW: Scotland faces Netherlands in high-intensity clash

Kenya will look to continue its winning run against Oman

PREVIEW: Scotland faces Netherlands in high-intensity clash - Cricket News

Scotland won 2-0 against a strong Ireland side – the defending champion in the ICC World T20 qualifier – in a four-match T20I series.

Scotland v Netherlands

Scotland will look to cement its spot at the top of the Group B table when it takes on the Netherlands in its second match of the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier 2015 at the Grange Cricket Club Ground in Raeburn Place, Edinburgh on Saturday (July 10).

The home side put in a commanding display in its tournament opener against the United Arab Emirates, winning by nine wickets. Michael Leask, having claimed five wickets in two warm-up matches with his off-spin, continued his good form, returning 3 for 20 after Scotland asked UAE to bat first. Then, having restricted UAE to 109, George Munsey scored a quick unbeaten 36-ball 62, supported by a very enterprising Kyle Coetzer (16-ball 39), to help complete the chase in 10 overs.

The Netherlands, meanwhile, suffered a 32-run loss to Afghanistan in its opening clash, but it did have its moments. After opting to field, it reduced Afghanistan to 39 for 3, with Mudassar Bukhari, the medium-pacer, especially good in his opening spell. However, Afghanistan recovered to post 162 for 7 and the Netherlands batsmen were eventually bowled out for 130.

To get the better of Scotland, the batsmen will have to find a way to counter the bowlers. Leask is in good form, but Mark Watt and Josh Davey were also dangerous against UAE. Watt, the left-arm spinner, finished with figures of 3 for 28, while Davey, though wicket-less, was economical, his three overs of medium-pace going for just 15 runs.

Scotland has been in terrific form over the last month. It won 2-0 against a strong Ireland side – the defending champion in the ICC World T20 qualifier – in a four-match T20I series. It also beat UAE in a three-day match and claimed first-innings points during a rain-marred draw against Afghanistan. Furthermore, it registered big wins in both its warm-up games against Namibia and Jersey.

That said, the Netherlands has been boosted by the decision of Roelof van der Merwe to secure a Dutch passport and play for the country. He was included in the starting XI against Afghanistan, and though he didn’t manage to perform with the bat, he did claim two wickets, and his experience could prove vital going forward.

Scotland is level on points with Afghanistan and Kenya but is placed first in the Group B table due to a better run-rate. The Netherlands, meanwhile, is yet to get off the mark, and sit at fifth in the table.

Teams (from)
Preston Mommsen (captain), Richie Berrington, Kyle Coetzer, Matthew Cross, Josh Davey, Con de Lange, Alasdair Evans, Michael Leask, Calum MacLeod, Gavin Main, George Munsey, Safyaan Sharif, Rob Taylor, Craig Wallace, Mark Watt.

Netherlands: Peter Borren (captain), Rahil Ahmed, Wesley Barresi, Mudassar Bukhari, Ben Cooper, Ahsan Malik, Stephan Myburgh, Max O'Dowd, Michael Rippon, Timm van der Gugten, Roelof van der Merwe, Paul van Meekeren, Thijs van Schelven, Pieter Seelaar, Michael Swart.

Kenya v Oman

Kenya will attempt to win its second match on the trot against Oman in Saturday’s second Group B clash in Edinburgh, having put in a solid performance against a determined Canada in its tournament opener on Friday.

Kenya opted to field, but found the Canada openers to be in good form, with Ruvindu Gunasekera and Rizwan Cheema putting on a quick 83, before Kenya fought back with James Ngoche and Odhiambo taking two wickets apiece. It required a stunning unbeaten half-century from Irfan Karim, who ended with a 54-ball 74, to take Kenya through to a seven-wicket win.

It was a welcome turnaround for Kenya, having lost to Papua New Guinea by ten runs in one warm-up match, while the other, against United States of America, was washed out. Despite chasing a fairly tricky total, the Kenya batsmen stitched partnerships together, with Karim and Morris Ouma involved in a 94-run unbroken stand for the fourth wicket.

That is a quality that could serve Kenya well against Oman, who will be playing its first match in the tournament proper and whose bowlers could lack match practice, given that both its warm-up matches – against Ireland and Nepal – were washed out. Against Ireland, the Oman batsmen, led by Zeeshan Maqsood’s 31-ball 44, had posted 115 for 4 in the 16.3 overs that were possible, but only three balls could be bowled in the next innings. Then, against Ireland, the Oman batsmen were bowled out for 91 before the rest of the play was washed out.

Given that Oman will follow up the clash against Kenya with a match against Canada the very next day, a good start is imperative.

Teams (from)
Kenya: Rakep Patel (captain), Emmanuel Bundi, Narendra Kalyan, Irfan Karim, Karan Kaul, Lucas Ndandason, James Ngoche, Shem Ngoche, Collins Obuya, Eugene Ochieng, Nehemiah Odhiambo, Nelson Odhiambo, Elijah Otieno, Morris Ouma, Gurdeep Singh.

Oman: Sultan Ahmed (captain), Yousuf Abdulrahim, Zeeshan Ahmad, Amir Ali, Khawar Ali, Munis Ansari, Aamir Kaleem, Mehran Khan, Ajay Lalcheta, Sufyan Mahmood, Zeeshan Maqsood, Muhammad Nadeem, Rajeshkumar Ranpura, Jatinder Singh, Vaibhav Wategaonkar.