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Oman the big winners on day one

Wed, Oct 3, 2012 1:35 PM

Oman the big winners on day one
Action from Hong Kong's victory over Saudi Arabia
There were victories for Oman, Afghanistan, Hong Kong and Nepal on the opening day of the Asian Cricket Council Trophy Elite.

Oman batsman Zeeshan Maqsood turned in the individual performance of the day - and it will take quite a feat to eclipse it over the remainder of the tournament being played across the Emirates - with 199 against Bhutan.

The opener's innings lasted 159 balls, contained 18 fours and nine sixes and was only denied a double century when he was run out with 34 balls still to go.

Oman rattled up 415-5 from their 50 overs with other significant contributions from Jatinder Singh (67 off 57 balls) and Amir Ali (53 not out off 24 balls).

Bhutan were bowled out for 103 in just 21.2 overs in reply to give Oman victory by a mammoth 312 runs.

Thinley Jamtsho made 42 but only two other batsmen made double figures as Adnan Ilyas claimed 6-33.

Unsurprisingly, Oman top Group A ahead of today's other winners - Afghanistan - by virtue of their net-run-rate.

Afghanistan's win over Malaysia was far more closely-fought with the ICC World Twenty20 2012 qualifiers not having matters all their own way despite a 36-run victory.

A batting wobble saw Afghanistan slip to 85-4 after 23 overs after being put in to bat. Samiullah Shenwari (56) and Mohammad Nabi (47) rescued their side with a fifth-wicket stand of 89 before Afsar Khan (27) and Rahmat Shah (16 not out) put on 44 at the end of the innings after three wickets had fallen for 10 runs.

Malaysia wicketkeeper Shafiq Sharif (75 not out off 84 balls) made life difficult for their exalted rivals in the reply but a valiant run-chase came up short. Gulbodin Naib was the pick of the Afghanistan bowlers with 3-17 from seven overs.

Hong Kong top Group B as they also enjoyed an emphatic victory - by 209 runs against Saudi Arabia.

Sizeable contributions from their top order - Irfan Ahmed (60), skipper Jamie Atkinson (49) and Nizakat Khan (65) - took Hong Kong to 278, although they will have been disappointed to be bowled out with two overs left unused.

Mohammad Nadeem took 3-40 but any hopes of reaching a challenging total were quickly extinguished.

Tanwir Afzal (2-10) struck in the first over as six bowlers claimed wickets in Saudi Arabia's 69 all out. Nadeem Ahmed was the star of the show with figures of 7-5-5-4.

Nepal put in a hugely impressive display to beat UAE by four wickets after bowling their opponent out for just 133. Leg-spinner Shakti Gauchan (5-32) bamboozled the UAE batting line-up with good support from Basanta Regmi (3-13). Only a quickfire 33 from No. 8 Mohammad Azam got UAE into three figures after they slipped to 82-6.

UAE fought hard in the reply - Arshad Ali taking 2-16 in his 10 overs - but there was never any hurry for the Nepal batsmen chasing such a paltry score. Opener Anil Mandal (63) held the innings together and was only dismissed with 22 needed.

Thursday's games see Group A winners Afghanistan and Oman face each other while Maldives get into action for the first time against Bhutan.

Kuwait are the last team to get underway in Group B - against Hong Kong - and UAE take on Saudi Arabia.

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