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PNG’s tough challenge against confident Nepal
Nepal to win
Tournament: Nepal vs Papua New Guinea in Oman 2021 | Format: ONE-DAY | Venue: Al Amerat Cricket Ground, Al Amerat, Oman | Toss: To BatBet Now
The 1st game of the two-match series between Nepal and Papua New Guinea was closer than most people would have expected. Though Nepal dismissed PNG for a small total in the game they made a mess of the chase and painstakingly won the game by 2 wickets. This would surely give Papua New Guinea a ray of hope going into the next game.
Papua New Guinea have lost the last nine games in a row and their confidence would be low right now. Their top order has struggled in most of the games the side has played in the last two years, and this would be worrying them. However, going by the performances in the last game we expect it to be a tight contest.
Nepal have struggled in this format for the last few years and this trend nearly came to haunt them in the last game. Gyanendra Malla would be slightly upset despite the win. His batsmen nearly made a mess of the chase after a good start losing 8 wickets for mere addition of 88 runs. Malla would like to see better efforts from his batsmen in this game and win the series 2-1.
Kushal Bhurtel and Aasif Sheikh did well in the last game opening the batting and a good start would be expected from them here. The middle order collapsed in the last game and runs would be expected from Malla, Aarif Sheikh and Sharad Vesawkar. Rohit Paudel played a match winning knock down the order and a similar show would be expected from him along with Kushal Malla.
They bowled exceptionally well in the last game with Sompal Kami and Bikram Sob doing damage with the new ball. Sandeep Lamichhane was too good for the PNG side, and he would look to dominate them here in this game. The side has good depth in the attack with Pawan Sarraf and Kushal Malla in the squad.
Gyanendra Malla (c), Kushal Bhurtel, Aasif Sheikh (wk), Sharad Vesawkar, Rohit Paudel, Aarif Sheikh, Kushal Malla, Sompal Kami, Pawan Sarraf, Bikram Sob, Sandeep Lamichhane
Assad Vala’s side fell short of the challenge with the bat in the last game. While their bowlers did raise expectations with a good show it was in the first half that the side lost the game. Most of their batsmen seem to lack the temperament to do well in this format. Vala would want his players to bounce back and level the series here.
Lega Siaka looked good, but he would need support from Tony Ura in the other end. A good stand is a must for the side considering their poor batting form. Vala must make good use of his experience in the middle order and build partnerships with Charles Amini and Sese Bau. Kiplin Doriga and Gaudi Toka did score runs down the order and the same would be expected from them.
Damien Ravu and Nosaina Pokana impressed with the new ball in the last game and the side would like to see a similar performance from them here. Chad Soper bowled a miserly spell, and the side would like him to repeat the same magic. With Gaudi Toka and Amini also doing well with the ball, the side would be high on confidence in this department.
Assad Vala (c), Charles Amini, Tony Ura, Lega Siaka, Sese Bau, Kiplin Doriga (wk), Gaudi Toka, Chad Soper, Jason Kila, Damien Ravu, Nosaina Pokana
The skies over Al Amerat would be clear on September 10 and the conditions are expected to be hot and humid during the game. Batsmen would be able to play their strokes easily on this surface. The side that bats first in this game would like to put up more than 270 runs on the board.
Al Amerat Cricket Ground is a typical Arabian surface where batsmen always enjoy playing their strokes. The wicket is flat and outfield fast. Fast bowlers have struggled on this surface in the past given the conditions, but spinners have enjoyed bowling here as the ball grips and turns sharply.
This venue is known for having a flat surface where teams have scored lots of runs in the past. Chasing scores is bit of challenge as the ball can start to turn in the latter overs of the game. Hence, the side winning the toss would be happy to bat first in the game.
Both the sides have lot of things to worry about after their performance in the last game especially Papua New Guinea. Their batting looks in poor shape and they would have to make a strong comeback to win this game. It was an underperformance from the Nepalese batsmen in the last game, but they are a better side, and this would put them slightly ahead of PNG in this game.
Nepal to win
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