Despite boasting a history of having made it to the ICC Men's T20 World Cup twice, Hong Kong's recent T20 form is a cause for concern ahead of the 2019 Qualifier.
Hong Kong, heavyweights in associate cricket, will go into the ICC Men's T20 World Cup Qualifier 2019 with the experience of having won it before. However, they will not be completely self-assured ahead of the 14-team tournament. Their returns in T20 cricket over the last three years have been far from ideal, with just one win in eight games in this duration.
Having played T20I cricket since 2014, though, Hong Kong are one of the most experienced teams competing in Dubai this year. Moreover, their spirited performance in the 2018 Asia Cup against teams such as India and Pakistan will give them a boost ahead of the Qualifier.
Who do you think will progress from the #T20WorldCup Qualifier to next year's tournament in 🇦🇺?— T20 World Cup (@T20WorldCup) October 14, 2019
How they got here
The sides ranked 11 to 16 in the ICC Men's T20I Team Rankings as of 31 December 2018 entered the 2019 T20 World Cup Qualifier automatically. Hong Kong was one of them.
Hong Kong qualified for the last two editions of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup, in 2014 and 2016, where they were eliminated in the group stage. They have a solitary victory in the competition, by two wickets against Bangladesh in the 2014 edition.
Nizakat Khan: One of Hong Kong's most prolific run-scorers over the years, Nizakat is the most reliable batsman in their line-up. He's their second-highest run-scorer in T20I cricket, and the highest in the current squad. Since January 2018, he has scored 254 international runs in ten appearances.
One to watch
Haroon Arshad: The 20-year-old has been in ominous form since making his T20I debut earlier this month, scoring 132 runs at an average of 66. He makes his runs at a rate of 146.66, and with scores of 19*, 45 and 68 in his first three games for Hong Kong, is an X-factor in their line-up.
18 October: v Ireland, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
20 October: v Oman, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
21 October: v United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
23 October: v Jersey, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
24 October: v Canada, Tolerance Oval, Abu Dhabi
27 October: v Nigeria, Tolerance Oval, Abu Dhabi
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