Maqsood helps Oman thrash Papua New Guinea in T20 World Cup opener

Omans Kaleemullah (C) celebrates with his teammates after taking the wicket of Papua New Guineas Lega Siaka (L) during the ICC Mens Twenty20 World Cup cricket match between Oman and Papua New Guinea at the Oman Cricket Academy Ground in Muscat on October 17, 2021. — Photo by Haitham Al-Shukairi/AFP
Oman’s Kaleemullah (C) celebrates together with his teammates after taking the wicket of Papua New Guinea’s Lega Siaka (L) through the ICC Men’s Twenty20 World Cup cricket match between Oman and Papua New Guinea on the Oman Cricket Academy Ground in Muscat on October 17, 2021. — Photo by Haitham Al-Shukairi/AFP

MUSCAT: Zeeshan Maqsood returned bowling figures of 4-20 to arrange a 10-wicket win for hosts Oman within the Twenty20 World Cup opener towards debutants Papua New Guinea on Sunday.

Maqsood’s 4 wickets, together with three in a single over, saved PNG to 129 for 9 within the first spherical match on the Al Amerat floor exterior Muscat.

Openers Aqib Ilyas (50 from 43 balls) and Jatinder Singh (73 from 42) then clattered the PNG bowlers across the floor with out being parted to steer Oman home with 6.2 overs to spare, handing Papua New Guinea a tricky lesson of their first ever World Cup outing.

Singh reached his fifty — the primary for an Omani batter in World Cups — with the third of his sixes and introduced up victory with the fourth by which stage Ilyas had joined him within the half-century membership.

Maqsood remained the hero together with his left-arm spin as he struck thrice in a single over to rattle PNG who had misplaced each their openers for nought.

PNG captain Assad Vala, who made 56 off 43 balls, and Charles Amini, who smashed 37, hit again with an attacking third-wicket partnership of 81.

But Mohammad Nadeem ran out the left-handed Amini with a direct throw on the non-striker’s finish to interrupt the stand and that opened the door for Maqsood.

“They were batting very well when I got the wickets. And because we got the wickets, they couldn’t put on a big total,” stated Maqsood.

“I just try to keep it tight and not give away loose balls. We knew the wicket was playing very well, we needed to make sure we didn’t give away loose balls and easy boundaries.”

Maqsood despatched again Norman Vanua, Sese Bau and Kiplin Doriga within the area of 5 deliveries and later took yet one more as Papua New Guinea collapsed from 102-3.

“It wasn’t a good start with the bat, losing two wickets with no runs,” stated Vala.

“But we fought back very well to get in a position to put on a good total. That collapse in the end was very disappointing.”

New-ball bowlers Bilal Khan and Kaleemullah, who goes by only one title, took two wickets every.

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