All 14 teams participating in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Qualifier were in action on Monday, 14 October, in a round of warm-up games in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
With six spots up for grabs at next year’s T20 World Cup in Australia and just four days until the start of the Qualifier, the first day of warm-ups was the perfect opportunity for players to find form and adapt to conditions.
In the morning games, both in Dubai, hosts UAE and Oman impressed with comprehensive victories over Scotland and Papua New Guinea respectively. At the Dubai International Stadium, UAE posted 157/5 – an impressive effort given the relatively slow nature of the pitch. Scotland's response never really got going as they found runs hard to come by against UAE's wily attack, whose frequent changes of pace proved effective.
Waheed Ahmed and Sultan Ahmed notched combined figures of 5/30 from eight overs as Scotland struggled to recover from a difficult start that saw them lose both openers inside the first two overs.
Oman, meanwhile, laid down an impressive marker at the ICC Academy. A total of nine bowlers were used as they bowled their opponents out for just 97. Four PNG players were run out. Like Scotland, Oman’s run chase got off to a less than ideal start as they lost both openers inside the first over. Although their middle order recovered admirably, Oman continued their excellent recent form – they were the winners of a home pentangular series earlier this month – with an eventual four-wicket win.
There were convincing wins for Jersey and Bermuda in Abu Dhabi. The two teams, neither of whom have ever qualified for a previous edition of the T20 World Cup, strolled to victory against Kenya and Nigeria respectively. Jersey made light work of Kenya’s 127/6, chasing it down in just 13.2 overs while Bermuda registered a 53-run win over Nigeria.
🇰🇪 vs 🇯🇪 🏏— Jersey Cricket (@cricketinjersey) October 14, 2019
Jersey win by 7 wickets
Jenner 45 off 29 (not out)
Stevens 32 off 19
Carlyon 23 off 14
Greenwood 14 off 11 (not out)
Ferraby 8 off 8#backingred #WCQwarmup #cricket@jsypost
@ICC @icc_europe @T20WorldCup pic.twitter.com/V9oete3Z9q
In Dubai, Ireland put in a confident, professional display against fellow tournament favourites Netherlands. Playing on the same surface as the UAE v Scotland encounter earlier in the day, Ireland batted well to post 156/8 – a more than handy effort. Skipper Gary Wilson top-scored with a fluent 44 while Mark Adair added much-needed impetus with a 13-ball 24 from No.8.
Ireland were excellent in the field. With the exception two dropped catches in the deep, they gave little away, keeping the Dutch well at bay. Craig Young was the standout performer with the ball, picking up 3/21 from his four overs. Adair added three wickets (all taken in the final over of the game) to the useful innings he played earlier in the day.
A Ravinderpal Singh-inspired Canada saw off Singapore in the highest scoring game of the day. Chasing Singapore's 164/5, Canada won the game with 12 balls to spare as Singh blasted 79 off just 38 balls – he’ll certainly be a player to watch out when the tournament gets underway on Friday.
The most exciting finish was at the ICC Academy in Dubai as the clash between Hong Kong and Namibia went down to the wire. Needing nine to win off the last over, Hong Kong claimed victory with a ball to spare – Scott McKechnie leading the way with a composed 31* that held the run chase together.
All 14 teams will again be in action on Tuesday for a final round of warm-up fixtures.
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