Mar 222014
‘Minnow will soon win World Twenty20’

The Netherlands have qualified for the World Twenty20 Super 10 stage after an incredible victory over Ireland as they chased down their target of 190 to win with six wickets and 37 balls remaining.

FORMER Australian spinner Colin “Funky’’ Miller has taken great delight at how cricket has become more funky.

He says the Twenty20 game has given minnow nations more impetus and predicts a side like Nepal or Hong Kong will one day be crowned Twenty20 world champions.

Miller, who played 18 Tests for Australia including one with his hair dyed electric blue, now lives in Las Vegas but has been watching the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh via the internet.

He has loved watching The Netherlands qualify for the main group and has enjoyed watching nations like Hong Kong and Nepal have memorable wins.

Miller says cricket’s traditional powerhouse teams better watch their backs in the shortest form of the game.

“It seems that this 20-over game has really invigorated these once minnows, players now grow up playing T20 as their first experience of cricket,’’ Miller told News Limited.

“And now the traditional power countries of the game had better watch out.

“T20 cricket is akin to the handicap system in golf. On any given day a team not given a chance of victory can have an on day, take a few chances, hit a few in the middle and cause what once would have been called one of the greatest upsets in the game.

“I can’t wait for the day that Ireland or Hong Kong or Nepal, or even Papua New Guinea are crowned as world T20 champions. And don’t forget to keep an eye out for China in a few years.’’

Colin Miller sends one down.

Colin Miller sends one down. Source: News Limited

Miller retired 12 years ago and says he could not have imagined a team like Hong Kong now holding full ODI status. And he never foresaw how Twenty20 cricket would rise to become the dominant money earner for professional cricketers.

Miller, one of the most versatile players Australia produced who switched from pace bowling to offspin in the middle of his career, would have surely been a hit in Twenty20 cricket.

The World Twenty20 is the only major cricket trophy Australia has not won but Miller believes it is finally on the right track.

After being slow learners in Twenty20 cricket and for years selecting sides that were a near replica of sides in other forms of the game, Australia has taken a specialist squad of Twenty20 cricketers to Bangladesh.

“It would seem that the Aussies have taken selection for this tournament pretty seriously and for what might be the first time, selected a squad of 20-over specialists,’’ Miller said.

“Who cares that one of those guys is 43 years of age, there are also the 20-year-olds in there as well.”

Australian skipper George Bailey agrees that Twenty20 cricket is the perfect format for spreading the game to new areas.

“I’ve got no doubt Twenty20 has sparked cricket interest in Afghanistan, the UAE, Hong Kong and Nepal … those countries certainly believe,’’ Bailey said.

“If international sides are going to play the less cricket-developed nations then Twenty20 is the vehicle for it.’’

Mar 202014
Video - Hong Kong, Nepal Celebrate 'Upset Thursday' - Cricket World TV
Thursday 20 March 2014 

Watch our latest cricket news video round-up from the ICC World Twenty20 2014 in Bangladesh on a day when Nepal upset Afghanistan and Hong Kong shocked hosts Bangladesh.

However, despite a two-wicket defeat, Bangladesh still qualified for the Super 10s, where they will play Australia, India, Pakistan and the West Indies, due to a superior net run-rate to Nepal.

It was a dramatic day and one which saw a number of outstanding performances.

Nepal beat Afghanistan by nine runs before Hong Kong dismissed Bangladesh for 108 and then got home in the final over, Haseeb Amjad winning the game with a six.

There were also two women’s warm-up matches today and tomorrow sees a triple-header as Group B concludes with Ireland v Netherlands and UAE v Zimbabwe and Group 1 begins as arch-rivals India and Pakistan clash.

© Cricket World 2014

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Mar 192014
ICC World Twenty 20 2013-14: Nepal turned out to be too easy for Bangladesh

In the previous match against Hong Kong, Nepal played some skillful cricket and everyone was anticipating a much better show from them in the match against Bangladesh. At the end, Nepal turned out to be a piece of cake for Bengal Tigers. Now Bangladesh is more likely to get a place in the main round from Group A having won their both matches.

Match Review: Group A, Round 1, 6th Match, Bangladesh vs. Nepal – 18th March 2014, Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Chittagong Bangladesh

Bangladesh while chasing a modest target of 126 set by Nepal was never in trouble. Tamim and Anamul started-off briskly for 63 in just under 8 overs. Anamul showed his class and timing to good extent while Tamim was also not far behind him. They made 42 and 30 respectively. When Shakib and Sabirr were batting, it was never a problem. Shakib was on fire today, clouting 37 off just 18 balls. He cashed in his premiere form in this match as well and hit 4 huge sixes. Bangladesh have won their both matches in this round and if they move to the next round then Shakib will surely be the man to watch.

Bangladesh finally reached home in 16th over, bowled by Sagar Pun, when Shakib hit a four and a six to finish off the chase in style.

On the other hand, Nepal should not be too upset as they were not totally outclassed in this match. The conditions were very difficult to content with. Due to heavy dew, it was not easy to bowl and field in the second innings. It was Nepal’s first encounter with a Full Member.

Nepal, sent it to bat first by Mushfiq, started the proceedings very steadily. In the 4th over Farhad broke the opening partnership. Khakurel slogged at one that wasn’t short enough to play across the line to, he got a top edge that was taken comfortably by Razzak at mid off.

In the 7th over, Al-Amin rocked Nepal by the double strike in his over. Sagar sent back on the first ball as he spooned a length ball straight to the short cover to Shakib. On the third ball, he got Malla. AL-Amin got the ball to nip into the right-hander and Malla was half forward and looking to play across the line when the ball smashed into his front pad. At that point Nepal started wobbling on 39 for 3 in 6.3 overs.

Vesawkar and Khadka started to build a much-needed partnership and they negotiated the spin and pace from Bangladesh to some good extent. Nevertheless, they never got momentum with them as Bangladeshi bowlers were keeping it extremely tight and not giving away anything away.

In the 19th over, Khadka bowled by Mashrafe. He made a gutsy and cautious 41 in 35 balls with the help of 5 boundaries. Khadka and Vesawkar contributed 85 useful runs in 12.3 overs. However, it is on the slower side but we must not forget that Nepal is an associate member playing against the full member. Bangladesh is excellent in their home conditions. Vesawkar got run-out in the last over after making 40 in 41 balls.

Nepal did not get the final overs’ acceleration and ended but making a below par 126 on a pitch which was extremely good for batting. And dew has made things rather more difficult for the team bowling second. If the dew remains the same throughout the tournament then the toss will play a crucial part in the outcome of the matches.

Bangladesh 132 for 2 (15.3 overs) Anamul 42, Shakib 37*, Regmi 1-14) beat Nepal 126 for 5 (20 overs) Khadka 41, Vesawkar 40, Al-Amin 2-17, Mashrafe 1-23) by 8 wickets

Player(s) of the match: Al-Amin Hossain, Bangladesh

Disappointment(s) of the match: G Malla, Nepal

Umpires: Aleem Dar (Pakistan) and RJ Tucker (Australia)

Mar 182014
Bangladesh powers past Nepal

Published: 6:32AM Wednesday March 19, 2014 Source: AP

Bangladesh was all but assured of qualifying for the main round of the World Twenty20 after inflicting an eight-wicket defeat on Nepal today.

The tournament host was the only team in its group with two wins from two matches, and is favored to claim the qualifying spot when it meets winless Hong Kong on Friday (NZT).

Nepal, which beat Hong Kong on Sunday, never looked like challenging when it was restricted to 126-5, and Bangladesh raced to 132-2 in 15.3 overs.

Shakib Al Hasan was unbeaten on 37 off 18 balls and sealed the victory with his fourth six after refusing to run a winning single on the previous ball.

Opening batsman Anamul Haque top-scored with 42 off 33 balls, and shared an opening stand of 63 with Tamim Iqbal, who made 30 as Nepalese bowlers found it hard to handle the wet ball under heavy dew.

Earlier, after electing to bowl first with the dew in mind, Bangladesh medium fast bowler Al-Amin Hossain took two wickets in three deliveries to have Nepal at 39-3 before captain Paras Khadka (41) and Sharad Vesawkar (40) added 85 for the fourth wicket.

“The toss was important because of the dew and it was very difficult to grip the ball,” Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim said.

Khadka rued the fact that his batsmen could not hit a single six while Bangladesh batters smashed nine in their brisk run-chase.

“Nepal needed 140-plus to challenge Bangladesh in these conditions,” Khadka said. “We got stuck and didn’t rotate strike in the middle … lacked the big hits too.”

Bangladesh 132-2 in 15.3 overs(Anamul Haque 42, Shakib Al Hasan 37 not out; Basant Regmi 1-14) defNepal 126-5(Paras Khadka 41, Sharad Vesawkar 40; Al-Amin Hossain 2-17) by eight wickets.

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