Kuwait overwhelm Thailand but Malaysia surprise Bahrain as Group A is set for an exciting finish 

The third day of the ICC U19 Men's World Cup Asia Division 2 Qualifier in Bangkok saw Thailand face Kuwait at TCG and Malaysia play Bahrain at AIT. Kuwait and Bahrain had won their matches on the first day but Thailand and Malaysia were looking for their first wins of the tournament.

Kuwait were far too good for Thailand as they managed to bat out their 50 overs to make a total of 171 for 9 and then their fast bowlers skittled Thailand for 87 to win by 84 runs but it was Malaysia who were victorious over Bahrain as they managed to score 129 for 7 to claim a three-wicket win. Group A will now be decided by the final round of matches.

At TCG Thailand won the toss and chose to field first but their opening bowlers didn't start well as left-armer Papawit bowled three wides and Natpakhan began with two full tosses which Hinsu hit for four and six. Two more boundaries followed as Kuwait's openers were being very positive but Natpakhan got Melrick caught at cover for 6.

Hinsu was taking full toll of loose bowling as he made 25 out of 36 for 1 in five overs but after one more boundary he was caught at mid-wicket off Natpakhan for 29. Thailand were fighting back as Natpakhan got Jay Mehta caught behind first ball to claim his third wicket as Kuwait were rocked back at 40 for 3 in 6 overs.

Kuwait's fifty came up in the ninth over with three wickets down and they scored 54 in the first 10 overs before spin was introduced. Natpakhan had figures of 3 for 29 in 5 overs

Chinnathip was on much earlier today than he was against Bahrain when he took three wickets with his slow left-arm spin. Off-spinner Phanuwat found the edge but Kuwait were 68 for 3 off 18 overs at drinks.


Kuwait had progressed to 80 at the halfway stage as the Thailand spinners bowled with good control but the two batsmen looked determined to use the full 50 overs with Asmeet on 24 from 51 balls and Shaies on 10 from 68.

Thailand's fourth spinner came on with Jetsada also bowling tightly but Kuwait reached 91 after 30 overs. Finally the fourth wicket fell on 93 with Shaies bowled by Chinnathip for a very patient 17 from 82 balls.

Kuwait's fourth-wicket stand accumulated 52 in 25 overs and the 100 came up in the 33rd over. The pressure began to tell as Asmeet was bowled by Jetsada for 31 from 84 balls with the score on 105 for 5.

Natpakhan was brought back after 25 overs of spin and he took his fourth wicket as Janath was caught at mid-off but the keeper could not hold on to two wide edges which would have given him a fifth wicket.

Kuwait were 126 for 6 in 40 overs and were looking for runs in the third powerplay but Aqif Farooq was caught at cover point off Ratthasat for 15. Paphawit the left-arm seamer was brought back but it was the spinners who had been more accurate as Jetsada was proving and Bahrain reached 150 in 46 overs.

Jetsada bowled his 10 overs for 17 and Phanuwat had figures of 9-4-13-1 but Ratthasat brought himself on to bowl the last over and he took two wickets in two balls. Moeez hit 30 and Bahrain reached 171 for 9. Natpakhan had final figures of 4 for 44.

Thailand knew that the target of 172 was perfectly achievable if they could bat the 50 overs. They had scored 150 against Bahrain in less than 40 overs but the Kuwait opening bowlers were quite lively in pace and could slip in short balls to keep the batsmen on their toes.

Arsh Sahil took the first wicket as he bowled Chetsarit for 1 while Aqif bowled Decaphon for 7 and had Pattarapol caught behind for 0 to leave Thailand in trouble on 13 for 3.

Natpakhan had already collected four wickets and was now batting at number four. Jetsada came in at five but Arsh Sahil got through his defences as he was bowled for 5. Thailand were 29 for 4 and Danuphon was in early. He tried to hit his way out of trouble but was bowled by Aqif for 0 and Arsh Salil also claimed his third wicket as Phanuwat was bowled for 1.

Thailand were 35 for 6 after 10 overs and five of the wickets were bowled as two pacy fast bowlers took three wickets apiece. Thailand captain Ratthasat supported Natpakhan for a while and hit a boundary but was bowled by Aqif as the opening bowlers were still charging in. Thailand were 54 for 7 and Natpakhan was playing a lone hand.

Drinks were taken after 15 overs and Thailand were 69 for 7 with Natpakhan on 36 from 25 balls. The off-spinner was now on and Natpakhan swept him for four.

Thailand were well ahead of the required rate and less than a hundred runs were required. The wickets were still falling as Janath had Aruesanan stumped for 1 off 12 balls then Chinnathip skied his first ball which fell safely then skied his third ball to be caught. Thailand were 79 for 9 in 18 overs with Natpakhan on 44.

Thailand might have been on the brink of defeat but Natpakhan has had a day to remember as he reached his fifty in 43 balls with 6 fours to add to figures of 4 for 44.

He couldn't win the match on his own and the number 11 was also bowled and a total of seven batters were out that way. Thailand were dismissed for 87 in 20.2 overs as Kuwait won by 84 runs. Aqif took 4 for 35 and Arsh Salil 3 for 37 as Kuwait gained an emphatic victory but Natpakhan was player of the match for his all-round performance.


Bahrain and Malaysia contested a much closer encounter at AIT with Bahrain needing a second win after earlier beating Thailand to make sure of a semi-final place. Instead Malaysia fought back brilliantly to bowl out Bahrain for 127 and then chase down the target with three wickets to spare.

Bahrain’s openers had been in excellent form against Thailand on the opening day and today Aryan Ashwin and Abhinav shared an opening stand of 47 to put Bahrain into a strong position but Ashwin’s innings of 28 from 72 balls was the highest individual score for Bahrain who lost wickets regularly.

Ammar Aiman took 4 for 36 and Qaleef  Khalid 3 for 13 as Bahrain collapsed from 67 for 1 in 18 overs to 127 all out in 43.4 overs and only 32 extras helped to reach a total that high.

Malaysia would have been looking for a solid start but they had lost three wickets with just 18 on the board as Hamdan dismissed both openers cheaply and Viswaesh bowled Muhammad Akram for 2 after he had been his team’s main batsman against Kuwait.

Today it was Mohammad Hairil who held the innings together for Malaysia as he led the recovery with Ammar Aiman who made 19 in a partnership of 33 for the fourth wicket but Malaysia kept losing wickets as Mounish Swamy picked up two wickets as Malaysia slipped to 91 for 7.

Hairil was still at the crease and he was determined to see his side home to victory as he batted 92 balls for an unbeaten 42 with only two fours and he was helped out by Haziq Haiqal who hit 12 from 15 balls with 3 fours as all his runs came in boundaries and it was Haziq who saw Malaysia home to victory by three wickets with a pair of fours.

Kuwait are now top of the table in Group A with four points after two wins but Bahrain and Malaysia both have two points so with Bahrain playing Kuwait and Malaysia facing Thailand in the last round of matches any of the three teams can qualify for the semi-finals depending on the results and the net run-rate.

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