UAE, Thailand and Nepal register wins on Day 3

UAE left-arm seamer Mahika Gaur starred with a hat-trick in UAE’s win over Malaysia on the third day of the ICC Under-19 Women’s T20 World Cup Asia Qualifier. The morning also saw Thailand’s bowlers deliver a convincing win against Qatar before Bhutan’s bowlers gave Nepal a scare while defending a target of 67.

UAE vs Malaysia

Player-of-the-match and hat-trick hero Mahika Gaur was instrumental in restricting hosts Malaysia to a total of 33-9 before the UAE’s batters knocked off the target in four overs to set up a 9-wicket win at the UKM- YSD Cricket Oval.

UAE’s bowlers vindicated captain Theertha Satish’s decision to bowl first as they reduced Malaysia 4-4 in the third over. Gaur, on the back of a five-wicket haul against Nepal on Saturday, picked up all of the first four wickets to fall, sending Malaysia’s top order back to the dugout. She began the third over bowling Malaysian wicket-keeper Nurhasyimah Tajuddin for a duck and repeated it twice more to send back Nur Samad and Musfirah Azmi to complete her hat-trick.

Barring a 22-ball 11 from Nurul Adeb, no other Malaysian registered a double-digit score as the UAE were set a manageable 34 for victory.

In reply, the UAE openers, Lavanya Keny (13 *) and Theertha Satish (5) made a dash for the target but the latter was caught off Nur Samad in the third over. Samaira Dharnidharka, who had earlier picked two wickets with the ball, struck two boundaries to see her side over the line at the end of the fourth over.

Gaur was elated to contribute to her side’s emphatic win.

‘Very happy that the plan was executed correctly and we got the reward for it. Hopefully, we can continue the momentum for the next two matches and we can go to the World Cup, ‘she said.

Brief scores:

UAE won by 9 wickets. Malaysia 33-9 in 20 overs. UAE 34-1 in 4 overs.

Player of the Match: Mahika Gaur

Thailand vs Qatar

A clinical all-round display from Thailand, led by Pornnapha Saehoe’s 4 for 5, helped the side to canter to a 69-run win against Qatar, who could only manage 59-8 while chasing 129 at the Kinrara Oval.

Thailand elected to bat first but lost their top order, including captain Thipatcha Putthawong run-out for 15, inside the powerplay with the score at 34-3. Where Qatar would have sensed an opportunity to cause an upset and make further inroads, Aphisara Suwanchonrathi (21 off 26) and Sunida Chaturongrattana (31 off 32) forged a 46-run partnership for the fourth wicket. Tafaul El Nour then struck twice with the ball to reduce Thailand to 89-5 in the 14th over before Phannita Maya finished with an unbeaten 20-ball 22 to ensure her side reached a respectable total of 128-6.

In reply, Qatar’s chase never got going as they struggled for boundaries and runs managing just 12 runs in the powerplay while losing three wickets. Skipper Saachi Dhadwal hit a 59-ball 29 to hold fort but found little support at the other end as four batters were dismissed for a duck and no other batter could manage a double-digit score.

Saehoe, the Player of the Match, credited her side’s fielding for the win.

‘I think our win is due to the good support system within the team. We focussed on fielding and stopping runs and we hope to be able to repeat the same in the next two matches, giving our 100 per cent, ‘she said after the game.

Brief Scores:

Thailand won by 69 runs. Thailand 128-6 in 20 overs. Qatar 59-8 in 20 overs.

Player of the Match: Pornnapha Saehoe

Nepal vs Bhutan

A composed unbeaten 30 from Sanu Rajbanshi helped Nepal defeat Bhutan by four wickets in a nervy chase against Bhutan.

After winning the toss and choosing to bat, Bhutan skipper Ngawang Choden struck a pair of early boundaries to propel Bhutan to 20 for no loss at the end of four overs.

However, the introduction of Manisha Kumari Upadhayay proved to be the turning point. The Nepalese bowler conceded a mere three runs in a four-over spell where she bowled 21 dot balls and collected the wickets of Choden and the Bhutan skipper’s opening partner Sonam. Left-arm spinner Kritika Marasini and seamer Anu Kadayat chipped in with two wickets apiece as the boundaries dried up for Bhutan. To their credit, Bhutan reached their highest total of the tournament, eventually posting 66/9 against their more fancied opponents.

In the first over of Nepal’s chase, opener Sneha Mahar was caught by Sangay Zangmo off the bowling of Anjuli Ghalley with just one run on the board.

Sana Praveen then hit back with a pair of boundaries before Kiran Kunwar was again caught off Zangmo, this time off the bowling of Sonam. Sangay Wangmo was then introduced into the attack, snaring three wickets on either side of Ashma Pulami Magar being run out by Ghalley. At 61/6 and two days after being bowled out for 8 by the UAE, Nepal still required another six runs for victory.

However, to the relief of Nepal’s dugout, Rajbanshi struck the last ball of Wangmo’s spell for four to level the scores. Alisha Kumari Yadav then took a single off the first ball of the 15th over to seal the win for Nepal.

Unsurprisingly, Sanu Rajbanshi was awarded the Player of the Match award for her calm innings under pressure. She spoke of the importance of bouncing back after being convincingly defeated by the UAE

‘I gave my best for the team, not so much for myself. Everyone worked hard to be here, so today I said we must win at any cost and we did, ‘she said.

Brief Scores:

Nepal won by 4 wickets. Bhutan 66-9 in 20 overs. Nepal 67-6 in 14.1 overs.

Player of the Match: Sanu Rajbanshi


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