Ireland and Netherlands secured qualification for the play-offs at the ICC Men’s World T20 Qualifier after registering convincing wins over Nigeria and Bermuda by eight wickets and 92 runs respectively.
Craig Young’s four for 13, alongside Mark Adair’s two for ten, meant Nigeria were not allowed to get going with the bat against Ireland and could only register a measly 66 for nine from 20 overs.
The chase was plain sailing for Ireland as Kevin O’Brien’s 32 and Paul Stirling’s 11 again got the side off to a fast start, and the target of 67 was reached in just 6.1 overs as they now sit top of Group B on eight points – however second place Oman still have one group fixture remaining.
In Group A Bermuda were no match for Netherlands as a Dutch record opening stand of 123 runs put them on their way to registering their highest ever team total of 206 for three.
Ben Cooper and Max O’Dowd both hit 58 and Colin Ackermann bashed a late 43 before Paul van Meekeren took three wickets for 26 as Bermuda could only register 114 for nine in reply, Kamau Leverock top scoring with 31.
In the last game of the day, Namibia beat Singapore by 87 runs to move to third in Group A.
Ireland beat Nigeria by eight wickets
Ireland secured qualification for the play-offs thanks to career best T20I figures for Craig Young (four for 13) and Mark Adair (two for ten) which saw Nigeria restricted to just 66 for nine from their 20 overs and the Irish chase the target with ease.
Gareth Delany and Adair struck with early wickets as Nigeria only managed 33 for four from the opening ten overs before Young joined the party as he ripped out the middle and lower order to set up a canter to the finish.
Kevin O’Brien (32) and Paul Stirling (11) attacked in the powerplay as only they know how before Gareth Delany and Adair saw Ireland home for the loss of only two wickets in just six overs and one ball.
Ireland captain Gary Wilson said: “We did our job that we needed to do, we’re sitting top of the group and have put the pressure back on Oman a little to make sure they get a result and if they do that hopefully that’ll be enough to get us second spot.
“It’s two games, yesterday and today, we would expect to win but we have to still put in a performance to be able to do so and I thought we were very good with the ball both days.”
Nigeria captain Ademola Onikoyi said: “I felt we could have put up more runs than the 66 we did, we need to work on our psychology as there was maybe a bit of fear as they are a Test nation.
“We can’t be bowling dollies to them and they bowled pretty good areas and quite a lot of stock balls.”
Netherlands ease past Bermuda by 92 runs
Twin 58’s from Ben Cooper and Max O’Dowd in a Dutch record 123-run opening stand saw Netherlands notch up the highest score of the competition so far as they reached 206 for three from their 20 overs to overwhelm Bermuda and clinch a play-off place of their own.
Both men hit well in excess of a run-a-ball with 12 boundaries between them as Bermuda could not contain the flow of runs, before Colin Ackermann hit an 18-ball 43 to wrap up the innings and reach 200 and beyond to their highest ever team total.
Bermuda’s reply never really got going, losing three wickets inside the first six overs including the big scalp of Delray Rawlins for 16 when he looked like motoring, and Paul van Meekeren’s medium pace did the balk of the damage as he claimed three for 26 while Pieter Seelaar (two for ten) and Roelef van der Merwe (two for 23) also claimed two each.
Netherlands captain Pieter Seelaar said: “We wanted to make sure we won the game first, and we did that by piling on a big score – obviously Bermuda were going to come out and play some shots and today showed you can still catch up with net run rate.
“We’ve played Scotland quite a bit in recent times but how we’re going to beat them is how we’ve been playing our cricket here.
“Today we got off to a good start with the bat, which we haven’t done had in this tournament, and I think that’s going to be crucial but also Scotland are a very good team.”
Bermuda captain Rodney Trott said: “I think we felt throughout the seven games we built in spurts but we probably need to concentrate on our batting, it was meant to be our strongest point but we were let down a little bit with our starts.
“I feel our biggest thing is commitment. Commitment and respect is very important so hopefully when we go back we can keep these same guys together and keep moving forward.”
Erasmus top scores as Namibia beat Singapore
Namibia captain Gerhard Erasmus inspired his side to an 87-run victory over Singapore to move up to third in Group A.
Erasmus scored 72 off just 46 balls as Namibia posted 191 for 8 from their 20 overs.
In reply, the Namibian bowlers struck early and had Singapore 11 for 3 in the second over. Jan Frylinck finished with figures of 4 for 21 as Singapore were bowled out for 104.
Namibia captain Erasmus said: “It was very pleasing to win today and the result puts us in and amongst the top three now and we will have to wait and see what happens.
What was pleasing for me as a leader was that backed up the win yesterday and that can sometimes be difficult.”
“The batting is in a good place and we are looking calm and confident as a whole and the bowling are working the angles nicely.
“We need to be able to handle the pressure in the latter stages of the tournament and that will be key for us.”
Singapore captain Amjad Mahboob said: “They started very well, but we then fought back and got them to a position when we thought we could come back, but they batted very well – especially the captain and that took the game away from us.
“The catching was disappointing because it was a very crucial match and the three dropped catches did not go in our favour and the coaches will need to work on these.
“We will take away a lot of facilities away from this, we do not have a big ground like this in Singapore and we played very well. We will work on the mistakes that we made at this tournament.”
Scores in brief:
Ireland beat Nigeria by eight wickets, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
Nigeria 66-9, 20 overs (Sesan Adedeji 19; Craig Young 4-13, Mark Adair 2-10)
Ireland 67-2, 6.1 overs (Kevin O’Brien 32, Gareth Delany 11 not out)
Netherlands beat Bermuda by 92 runs, Dubai International Cricket Stadium
Netherlands 206-3, 20 overs (Ben Cooper 58, Max O’Dowd 58, Colin Ackermann 43 not out)
Bermuda 114-9, 20 overs (Kamau Leverock 31, Allan Douglas 23; Paul van Meekeren 3-26, Pieter Seelaar 2-10, Roelof van der Merwe 2-23)
Namibia beat Singapore by 87 runs, Dubai International Cricket Stadium
Namibia 191-8, 20 overs (Gerhard Erasmus 72, Jean-Pierre Kotze 36, Amjad Mahboob 3-29)
Singapore 104 all out, 17.1overs (Navin Param 28, Jan Frylinck 4-21, Christi Viljoen, 3-14)
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