05 Oct 2018

Hong Kong qualify for final of Hebou International T20 Tri-Series in PNG!



After four group stage games, the Hong Kong side has qualified for the finals of the Hebou International T20 Tri-Series, being played at Amini Park in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.

Organised by Cricket PNG, this Tri-Series involves Hong Kong, the Hebou PNG Barramundis, and the Cricket PNG Academy XI. Each team played the other twice, with two games a day on each of Monday 1st Oct, Wednesday 3rd Oct, and Friday 5th Oct. More details can be found here.


On Monday Hong Kong played the PNG Academy XI and registered a comfortable 8 wicket victory. After winning the toss they restricted CPNGXI to just 122/7 in 20 overs. Mohammad Ghazanfar had a good debut for the senior side, taking 3/26 in 4 overs, and Ehsan Nawaz bowled tidily to take 2/11 in his 4. In response, MOTM Anshuman Rath hit 56 off 30 balls, and Nizakat batted well for 45* off 36. The target was chased down inside 15 overs. A great start to the series for the HK boys.
Game 1: HK 123/2 (15) beat Cricket PNG Academy XI 122/7 (20) by 8 wickets
1st Innings Scoresheet
2nd Innings Scoresheet


On Wednesday they faced the Hebou PNG Barramundis, and after losing the toss managed to put them in a spot of bother - Tanveer Ahmed, Ehsan Nawaz and Aftab Hussain reducing them to 40/4 in 6 overs. However from there the Barramundis rebuilt - Sese Bau (60*) and Kipling Doriga (29) putting on 99 runs for the fifth wicket in just 11 overs. Norman Vanua then added the final flourish, hammering 48* off just 14 balls to lift PNG to a massive 195/5 in their 20 overs. PNG ransacked 88 runs off the final 5 over of the innings, and that ultimately proved decisive. Nizakat Khan hit a quick 23 opening the batting, but Anshuman, Mohammad Umar and Shahid Wasif were dismissed quickly, and the side were struggling at 54/4 in 8 overs. It was always going to be an uphill battle from there on in. Raag Kapur (37) and Waqas Khan (25) rebuilt the innings, and with 108 needed in the final 6 overs the batsmen had no option but to go for it. PNG seized on this opportunity, and took the final 6 wickets for just 22 runs. Damien Ravu took 4/19 and Norman Vanua followed up his cameo with 3/20, securing the MOTM award in the process. A clinical all-round display from the hosts
Game 2: PNG 195/5 (20) beat HK 118 a/o (19.4) by 77 runs
1st Innings Scoresheet
2nd Innings Scoresheet


The Barramundis picked up wins over CPNGAXI on both days as well, which meant that on Friday all HK had to do was win one of their two back-to-back games in order to make the Finals. They played the CPNGAXI first up, and a brilliant all-round performance from Waqas Khan guided the team to a 3 wicket victory, securing their spot in the Final against PNG. CPNGAXI won the toss and elected to bat first, putting up 140/6 in their 20 overs. The bowling was consistent throughout for Hong Kong - Waqas Khan took 3/24 and Kyle Christie 2/30, and Ehsan Khan 1/17 in 4 overs. Dogodo Bau top scored with 36, but every batsman managed to get into double digits. Nizakat Khan then scored a quick 44 to set the platform for the chase, before Waqas hit 41* in 29 balls to seal the deal. Mohammad Umar scored a useful 30 as well, and HK crossed the line in 17.4 overs.
Game 3: HK 144/7 (17.4) beat Cricket PNG Academy XI 140/6 (20) by 3 wickets
1st Innings Scoresheet
2nd Innings Scoresheet


Just 30 minutes later HK were back in action again. Anshuman won the toss and elected to bat first against PNG, and then teed off for the highest score of the series so far - 112 runs off 55 balls - and led his side to 177/5 in their 20 overs. His innings consisted of 11 boundaries and 7 sixes - 4 of which were hit in his last 9 deliveries - as he lit up Amini Park with some breathtaking batting. Unfortunately, his fantastic knock was to be in vain. A clinical runchase by PNG took them to their second consecutive win over HK, and saw them end the group stage of this tri-series undefeated. They lost an early wicket, but recovered well through Tony Ura (54) and Charles Amini Jnr., the latter scoring 69 not out to guide his team home in the chase. Things were tight for a while - PNG needed 21 from the last 3 overs and then 15 from the last 2. They lost a wicket in the 19th, and with 5 to win in the final over they had Jason Kila, yet to face a ball, on strike. But Jason wasn't fussed, and he smoked the very first ball he faced for six to win the game for PNG!
Game 4: PNG 179/4 (19.1) beat HK 177/5 (20) by 6 wickets
1st Innings Scoresheet
2nd Innings Scoresheet


A dominating tournament so far for the home side, but plenty of good signs for Hong Kong. After two hard fought games, they get another crack against PNG in the finals of the Hebou International T20 Tri-Series this Sunday, 7th October, at 11:30 AM HK Time. Be sure to tune in to our Social Media channels then for live scores and regular updates! Hong Kong Ga Yau!