Afghanistan Through To Super Sixes In WC Qualifiers

Sean Williams

The winners of the two classification playoffs - between Netherlands (Group A, 4th spot) and Hong Kong (Group B, 5th spot), and PNG (Group A, 5th spot) and Nepal (Group B, 4th spot) will square-off in the 7th place playoff, while the losers will play in the 9th place playoffs.

Their total of 153 represented something of a recovery after a series of mini collapses left them 110/8 in a must-win game.

For Nepal, Super Sixes was mathematically possible, practically not, but a victory meant there was still a chance to get ODI status for next four years. They will now await the result of the Hong Kong versus Nepal match to know their fate.

Sikandar Raza was the most successful bowler with three for 30, while Kyle Jarvis, Graeme Cremer and Sean Williams took two wickets apiece. If Nepal beats PNG and Hong Kong beats Netherlands, Nepal and Hong Kong play for 7th place and the prized ODI status.

Hong Kongs defeat also gave a lifeline to Afghanistan, who defeated Nepal by six wickets after Mohammad Nabi took four for 33 and then scored 34 in their last group match. Paudel hit two successive fours to finish the 40th over from Aizaz Khan and then hit the winning runs in the following over from Ehsan Khan.

Skipper Babar Hayat and Nizakat Khan steered them to 53 for one before Hayat was caught and bowled by opening bowler Sompal Kami for a breezy 20 from 16 balls. Kesrick Williams too did his part as he removed the lower-order batsmen, taking 4/43 in 8.2 overs.

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The pair ran superbly between the wickets and put pressure on the Hong Kong fielders.

Fast bowler Tim Murtagh was the pick of the Ireland bowlers with figures of 10-2-41-4, while Andy McBrine picked up 2/45.

Speedster Karan KC and Basanta Regmi bagged two wickets each while Sompal Kami and Lalit Rajbanshi chipped in with a wicket each.

Hong Kong needed to win to go through themselves and were hopeful of stealing the win but Nepal registered their first win in the tournament which spelled the end of the road for Hong Kong, the ICC reported. Nepal still have hope of gaining ODI status depending in other today's fixtures.

Zimbabwe will now take on defending champions Scotland on Monday and the victor of the match will take four points into the Super Six, while the loser will go through with two points. If Hong Kong beat Nepal, they will be the third team from Group B to advance to the next round.

West Indies, Ireland, Afghanistan and Zimbabwe are full members, Netherlands have already gained the ODI status are being the champions of ICC WCLD I. The team finishing seventh will obtain ODI status.

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