Day 4: Malaysia v Oman at Engineering Ground: OMAN COME THROUGH


  • It's particularly cold again in Kathmandu this morning, the sun looking like the moon through sheets of grey cloud. At least it's there though and we hope it'll break through in time. As it is, with the hazy, dewy conditions, as yesterday there should be swing early on for the fast bowlers and bowling first would be ideal.
  • Having said that, local eyebrows are again raised by the toss-winning captain of Malaysia, Suhan Kumar, choosing to bat first in the match v Oman. Play starts in 20 minutes.
  • Oman's XI: Hemal Mehta (Captain), Sultan Ahmed, Qais Al Said, Vaibhav Wategaonkar, Zeeshan Siddiqui, Awal Khan, Amir Ali, Aamir Kaleem, Rajeshkumar Ranpura, Ghazanfar Iqbal, Ajay Lalcheta
  • Malaysia's XI: Suhan Kumar (Captain), Suresh Navaratnam, Hammad Khan, Hassan Ghulam, Shukri Rahim, Shahrulnizam Yusof, Nik Arifin, Norwira Zazmie, Suharril Fetri, Ariffin Ramly, Rosman Zakaria
  • Malaysia 6 for 0 after the first over, having won the toss. A pulled FOUR by Hammad Khan, Sultan Ahmed the Oman' keeper standing up to the wicket to keep Hammad from walking down the wicket to tonk over the top.
  • Early days yet but Hammad plays what could be the shot of the day, a scorching drive off the front foot to long-off, FOUR and then follows it up with a savage front-foot pull off Rajesh Ranpura. RFM. Hammad beaten outside off last ball of the over, Malaysia 16 for 0 after 2 overs
  • Spin on as early as third for Oman, Ajay Lalcheta SLA, hoping to act as the brake on Malaysia. Will be turn and some bounce from the first ball.
  • Long-off, long-on the men in the deep for Lalcheta. Hammad Khan will want to keep them busy running around
  • Spin twinning - Hemal Mehta SLA brings himself on and strikes with his second ball, Rosman Zakaria RHB, bowled through the gate, and Malaysia are 19 for 1 in the fourth
  • Malaysia's captain Suhan Kumar the new man, had a quietish tournament so far, will want to make some noise today. His bat certainly does, crashes his first ball for FOUR to deep extra, Malaysia 23 for 1 in the fourth
  • Hammad and Suhan are going to be pressuring the fielders with their running, in between the SIXes that is, Suhan lofts a drive over long-on and then follows it up with a fine stroke through the off-side for FOUR, Malaysia 36 for 1, half-way through the 4th
  • Suhan Kumar flick-pulls to the vast empties at square leg, and then punches another FOUR through off next ball, Malaysia racing along at no risk, 45 for 1 in the 6th
  • Hammad Khan one of the few batsmen to use their feet against the spinners this tournament, a big part of why he's been scoring so many, comes down the wicket to drive Hemal Mehta to the sightscreen for FOUR, Malaysia 51 for 1 after 6 overs
  • Aamir Kaleem SLA comes on for the seventh, three fielders on the leg-side boundary, Malaysia 59 for 1 after 7 overs
  • Hammad Khan 28* off 22, Suhan Kumar 27* off 11
  • Hemal Mehta, 2-0-19-1, takes himself off, Amir Ali OB comes on at the Patan End
  • SIX over mid-wicket by Suhan Kumar, there's a fielder there for the shot but he had no chance, Malaysia 66 for 1 in the 8th over
  • WICKET Aamir Kaleem strikes, looks like an under-edge by Suhan Kumar as he tried to pull/sweep a ball while going down on one knee, Malaysia 68 for 2 at the start of the ninth, Suhan 35 off 17 balls, four 4s, two 6s
  • Ariffin Ramly doesn't stay long, caught behind and Oman have a double strike in the ninth, Malaysia 68 for 3
  • Hemal Mehta SLA brings himself back on at the Patan End. A lot on Hammad Khan's shoulders now. He responds with a SIX over mid-wicket, fielder beneath it could only watch it soar way over him, Malaysia 74 for 3 in the 10th over
  • Ten off the over, Malaysia 78 for 3 at the half-way stage, and have a platform for acceleration only if Hammad Khan (36* off 27 ball, five 4s, one 6) can stay. Not much batting beyond him and Suharril Fetri and Suresh Navaratnam. 150 looks on though!
  • Hammad Khan currently the tournament's highest scorer
  • WICKET Fetri falls lbw after a long appeal by Amir Ali OB, 11 runs off 10 balls by the young man, Malaysia 87 for 4 in the 12th
  • Suresh Navaratnam RHB, has played more pressure games than he's had cold meals comes in for Malaysia
  • Oman's fielding not been what they'd have liked, a couple of half-chances and a dropped catch, Hammad surviving in the 13th over, Suresh Navaratnam drives the next ball of the Aamir Kaleem over for FOUR to compound his opponents' misery, Malaysia 96 for 4 after 13 overs
  • Suresh Navaratnm holes out to long-off, mistimed the drive, and Oman have a Big WICKET. He goes for 6 off 5 balls, Aamir Kaleem SLA picks up his third and Malaysia are 96 for 5 at the start of the 14th, Hammad 38*
  • Shukri Rahim RHB the new batsman for Malaysia. Oman still a mixture of good and not so good in the field. Thing is the ball seems to finding the not so good the most
  • WICKET Ajay Lacheta SLA deflects a Hammad drive on to the stumps and the non-striker Shukri is run-out for 4 off 4, Hammad 46*, Malaysia 108 for 6 with five overs to go.
  • Hassan Ghulam, a smiter, the new Malaysian batsman, there could be fireworks
  • Irony! WICKET Hammad also run out at the non-strikers end, for 47, apparently backing up too far. Can't believe it and is having a bit of a strop but go he must and quietly too. Match referee will have noted his number. Malaysia 110 for 7 in the 16th
  • A FOUR and then a SIX by Hassan Ghulam to end the over, the last one right on to the roof of the Omani tent at mid-wicket and Malaysia are 120 for 7 with four overs to go.
  • Awal Khan RFM on at the Bagmati End for his second over
  • Three overs to go, Malaysia on 126 for 7, every run from now on, adding to the mountain Oman will have to climb. Plenty climb Everest every year but Malaysia coach Kodikara reckons 140 is a winning score
  • 3 runs off the 18th over, bowled by Ajay Lalcheta, good one for Oman and Malaysia are on 129 for 7 with twelve deliveries of the innings remaining
  • WICKET Nik Azril's bowled by Awal Khan, Malaysia 130 for 8 with ten balls to go
  • Hassan Ghulam forearms a half-volley from outside off by Awal Khan and places it over midwicket for SIX, Malaysia 137 for 8 with 7 balls to go
  • Hassan took a single off the last ball of the 19th over and is just where he'd like to be - on strike at the start of the 20th. Hemal Mehta SLA to bowl the last
  • The first ball - no chance of two, but Norwira does well to get Hassan on strike for the third, Malaysia 140 for 8 with four balls to go
  • WICKET Hassan (27 off 19, one 4, two 6s) run-out looking for a two to square leg that was on had it not been for hesitation and with two balls to go, Malaysia are 141 for 9
  • Shahrulnizam LHB does very well in clipping two FOURs to finish the innings, one down to third man and the other square off the back foot through point and Malaysia have a very competitive 149 for 9 on the board.
  • Those last eight runs could prove to be very significant.
  • Malaysia won the toss and chose to bat. 149 for 9 off 20 overs (H.Khan 47, S.Kumar 35; A.Kaleem 3-18). INNINGS BREAK. Play resumes in seven minutes
  • Oman will be a little disappointed they couldn't put more pressure on the Malaysian batsmen who barring a couple of overs, never really struggled. Three run-outs, two of them unusual, helped Oman but Malaysia having set a target of 150 thanks in the main to Hammad Khan, Suhan Kumar and Hassan Ghulam are far the happier team at the break
    It's all set up for a great contest. Oman have hitters at the top but not much depth. Malaysia have three good seamers and three good spinners. And are way better in the field than Oman. 55/45 to Malaysia at this stage but if we all knew how things would turn out we wouldn't be so interested in watching would we?
  • Oman have been Amazing. Shots of power and placement all around the ground, Zeeshan Siddiqui even coming down the wicket to Suresh Navaratnam and they have raced to 28 for 0 after just two overs.
  • Shahrulnizam SLA too good to hit around and concedes just 1 run from his first over, Oman 29 for 0 after 3, Target 150
  • WICKET Nik Arifin OB bowls Zeeshan Siddiqui (13 off 10, three 4s)with a toppie and Malaysia are back in it. Oman 30 for 1 at the start of the 4th, Target 150
  • Shukri Rahim OB comes on in place of Shahrulnizam 1-0-1-0 at te Bagmati End and Ghazanfar Iqbal (16* off 11) who has been chosen purely for his batting, isn't looking too comfortable at all against the turning ball
  • Oman 43 for 1 after 5 overs, Target 150
  • Vaibhav Wategaonkar LHB the foundation of Oman's batting, Oman need a big score for him. Top-score of 45 in his two innings so far
  • CHANCE good effort by Suhan Supermanning to his right at mid-on, fingertips the Iqbal pull. Oman 49 for 1 after 6 overs, Target 150
  • Shukri Rahim OB bowling a very good line right on a good length to the LHB RHB combination and just two runs off the over, Oman 51 for 1 after 7 overs, Target 150
  • Suharril Fetri OB causing the Omani veterans some problems too, the first ball went for FOUR, not convincingly. Oman 57 for 1 after 8 overs, Target 150
  • Fetri and Shukri bowl fast, flattish off-spin, which the Omani batsmen are timing well, but as yet unable to beat the field. FOUR to finish the ninth over by Iqbal, driven through off. A tight finish developing, Oman 64 for 1 after nine overs, Target 150
  • WICKET Tight-bowling built pressure and Ghazanfar Iqbal tries a run after the ball goes to short third-man, both batsmen at the non-striker's end, with the keeper's end vacant - the throw goes to the bowler! Before, with the batsmen still together the 'keeper has the ball in his hands and knocks the long-vacated wicket down, Oman 69 for 2 in the 10th, Target 150
  • WICKET First ball of the next over, the big one - Vaibhav Wategaonkar - caught behind trying one of his trademark forces off the backfoot, Shukri OB the bowler and Oman are 69 for 3, Target 150 (G.Iqbal 33 off 28, V.Wategaonkar 17 off 11)
  • WICKET at the start of the 12th now, Awal Khan the hitter is caught at square leg by Suhan Kumar running round. Shahrulnizam SLA the wicket-taker and Oman in trouble and strife, 79 for 4. Target 150
  • All four Omani wickets have fallen to spinners, two overs of pace went for 28 runs, 10 overs of spin have gone for 48. Oman 76 for 4 after 12, Target 150
  • WICKET Qais Al Said LHB snicks Suresh Navaratnam RFM and Rosman takes well, low down and Oman are 87 for 5 in the 13th over, Target 150
  • In Oman's favour in this nine-an--over-needed run-chase is Sultan Ahmed. He can manufacture runs where few others can
  • Nik Azril OB back on, more flight than the other off-spinners in his side, relies on flight and fizz for his wickets. Won't be easy for the flat-footed to face.
  • At this stage of a run-chase, every dot ball is a painful thing for the batting team. Oman 94 for 5 after 14 overs, Target 150
  • SIX, The tall Rajesh Ranpura LHB hits tall Suresh Navaratnam RFM over long-on. Oman 95 for 5 in the 15th over, Target 150
  • Five overs to go, Oman need 45, five wickets in hand
  • Eight off the Nik Arifin OB over, Oman 113 for 5 with four overs to go, Target 150
  • The ground very quiet now. Both teams too tense to talk, the 100 or so Engineering College students watching, the same.
  • Hasaan Ghulam RFM, long hair flapping behind him, being worked to leg by Sultan Ahmed, no big shots yet, Oman 117 for 5 in the 17th over, Target 150
  • Oman finsih the 17th over on 120 for 5, 30 more needed
  • Sultan Ahmed tries a reverse-sweep, hasn't been too productive for him today and against Shahrulnizam the SLA ace, even less so. WICKET caught at fine leg inside the circle, and Oman are 122 for 6 with 16 balls to go, needing 28 more runs to win
  • Sultan Ahmed made 26 off 25 balls, with 1 four, the new Omani batsman (in a white helmet) is Amir Ali RHB
  • Two overs to go, Oman need two runs a ball, Target 150, Rajesh Ranpura 16* off 13 balls
  • Amir Ali comes to the party, swats a FOUR off one knee o ver mid-on and Oman are 134 for 6 with 10 balls to go, needing 150 to win
  • Last over! 12 wanted by Oman to win, they're 138 for 6 and 16 runs have come off the last 10 balls
  • Hassan Ghulam's effort ball slips down to fine leg for FOUR off the pads, the bowler screams in frustration, and Oman need 7 now to win, with four balls to go
  • Comes back with a blockhole ball. No run. Oman need 7 off three
  • Two and a run-out WICKET off the penuultimate ball! Oman need 3 off one to win
  • And OMAN WIN! Rajesh Ranpura crashes a full-length delivery through cover and Oman have won by three wickets! Big cheers by them, they embrace mid-pitch, Malaysia's fielders some of them, sitting down in disappointment....
  • A game that came to life in the closing stages, the typical wham-bam start by both sides, followed by a mid-innings slump, and then a late over burst that in this case, just took Oman over the line as they win off the last ball. Their semi-final place and thus a place in the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier next March closer to being in the bag
  • Man of the Match is still being debated - it could well be Hammad Khan, the tournament's top run-scorer up to now for his authoritative 47, but he is also in some water with the Match Referee for his petulance after being run-out

ACC Twenty20 Cup, Day 4
Group A: Malaysia v Oman at Engineering Ground
OMAN WON BY THREE WICKETS
Malaysia won the toss and chose to bat
Malaysia: 149 for 9 off 20 overs (H.Khan 47, H.Ghulam 35; A.Kaleem 3-18)
Oman: 151 for 7 off 20 overs (G.Iqbal 33; S.Yusof 2-17)
Man of the Match: Amir Kaleem (Oman)
Scorecard

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Filed December 6th, 2011