Hello and welcome to CricketCountry’s live coverage of the 16th match between Nepal and Papua New Guinea (PNG) at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi in the UAE on Wednesday. The two teams currently occupy the last two slots in the eight-team tournament, with Nepal being the only side in the tournament yet to register a victory after three games. In their previous encounter at the same venue on Monday, PNG managed to pip Nepal by two wickets in a closely-fought match that went down to the last over. There were several talking points from that match, with Sharad Vesawkar (78) and Subash Khakurel (63) getting half-centuries to propel their side to a score of 232 for 8, with Assad Vala taking three for 32 to emerge the pick of the bowlers.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 225/7 in 49.4 overs Target 225 | BATTING: John Reva 31(45), Jack Vare 76(90): Jack Vare and John Reva pick a few singles on Gauchan’s bowling. Vare slams Khadka for a boundary on the first ball of the final over. He picks a single which brings Reva on strike. Reva finishes off the game by taking a run on the fourth ball. With this, Papua New Guinea wins the match by three wickets and two balls to spare. It was John Ware’s brilliant batting down the order and Assad Vala’s bowling which helped Papua New Guinea win the match.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 204/7 in 46.2 overs Target 225 | BATTING: John Reva 23(37), Jack Vare 65(78): Jack Vare carts Sompal Kami for a boundary. Being the set batsman, it is his responsibility to see Papua New Guinea through this encounter. He has batted exceedingly well, but if he does not succeeds to take his team to victory, his knock will go in vain. PNG now requires 21 runs off 22 balls.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 195/7 in 45 overs Target 225 | BATTING: John Reva 20(33), Jack Vare 58(74): After picking some cheeky singles, Jack Vare slams Gauchan for a boundary in the last ball of the 45th over; his second boundary. PNG are now batting on 195 for the loss of seven wickets. They now need run a ball to win this encounter.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 181/7 in 43.3 overs Target 225 | BATTING: John Reva 13(28), Jack Vare 51(70): Papua New Guinea batsmen are striving to rotate the strike but runs are getting hard to come. Jack Ware has reached his half century. PNG now requires 44 runs to win off 39 balls. The way Reva and Vare are batting, it appears that they may pull off a win. Still nothing can be said, one more wicket and it shall be floodgates for PNG.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 174/7 in 42 overs Target 225 | BATTING: John Reva 11(24), Jack Vare 46(65): Jack Ware is just four short of his fifty. It’s interesting that in his 46-run knock so far, he has not struck a single four or six. PNG now needs 51 runs to win off 48 deliveries with three wickets in hand. The match is more or less in balance right now and any team can win.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 165/7 in 40 overs Target 225 | BATTING: John Reva 9(0), Jack Vare 39(44): The required run-rate may not have blown out of the roof as yet, but PNG are struggling with the crumbling of wickets, with Jack Vare running out of support at the other end. He is on the verge of getting to his half-century, and his presence is crucial for the ‘visiting team’ to keep their winning hopes alive.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 141/7 in 34.3 overs Target 225 | BATTING: John Reva 0(0), Jack Vare 26(44): Looks like, PNG will lose this encounter. It has happened time and again in the match, whenever PNG builds a partnership, they soon give the momentum to the opposition by playing a reckless shot. The latest to get out is Hiri Hiri for four. He was caught by Regmi on the bowling of Gauchan. OUT! Hiri Hiri c Regmi b Gauchan 4(22)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 137/6 in 33 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Hiri Hiri 4(22), Jack Vare 24(41): PNG’s run rate has slowed down. Both batsmen Hiri Hiri and Jack Ware are finding it difficult to pick singles. Papua New Guinea now needs 88 runs to win off 102 balls with four wickets in hand. We have to say that Nepal bowlers have bowled well. They have bowled good line and length and occasional bouncers and yorkers.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 130/6 in 30 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Hiri Hiri 3(14), Jack Vare 18(31): Hiri Hiri is taking his time to settle, no big issue since PNG do not require very quick scoring but keeping wickets in hand till the end. The match has got interesting and if Papua New Guinea do not lose any more wicket till the 40th over, the match will certainly go down to the wire. Sompal Kami has emerged as the most successful bowler for Nepal by picking three wickets.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 126/6 in 28 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Hiri Hiri 2(9), Jack Vare 15(24): PNG’s troubles are not ending, they lose another wicket. Charles Amini is caught by Sagar Pun of his own bowling. Hiri Hiri has come to the middle after Amini’s departure. CA Soper and N Vanua are next in the batting order. PNG needs 99 runs to win in 132 balls from here on with four wickets in hand. No team has a clear advantage at this time but the match appears to be slightly tilted in Nepal’s favour. OUT! Charles Amini c&b Sagar Pun 16(37)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 114/5 in 25 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Charles Amini 16(36), Jack Vare 6(17): PNG have lost half of their side mid-way. They are 114 for the loss of five wickets at the end of 25 overs. Charles Amini and Jack Ware are batting on 16 and six respectively. Both the batsmen haven’t hit a four so far. PNG now requires 111 runs to win in 150 balls, reachable but they should make sure that they do not lose any more wickets.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 103/5 in 22 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Charles Amini 10(28), Jack Vare 1(6): Nepal strike back, Sesi Bau gets out after a well played 36. He was caught by Khakurel on the bowling of Regmi. Jack Ware has come to the crease. Charles Amini has taken time to get his eye in, maybe he will now try to play a few more scoring shots because PNG’s tail has started and it’s feared that if the tail collapses, he may end up as the last man standing. PNG requires 122 runs to win from here on. OUT! Sese Bau c Khakurel b Regmi 36(41)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 101/4 in 20 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Charles Amini 9(23), Sese Bau 35(39): Spinners Basant Regmi and Sagar Pun are bowling well in tandem. They are not giving room to the batsmen for opening their arms. Left and right-hand batting partnership between Charles Amini and Sese Bau are finding it difficult to pierce the gaps. Hence, they are trying to rotate the strike.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 96/4 in 18 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Charles Amini 7(18), Sese Bau 33(33): Both the batsmen are trying hard to pick singles. Just when singles and doubles were getting hard to come, Sese Bau slams a four. Charles Amini and Sese Bau’s partnership is now worth 27 runs. Papua New Guinea still require 129 more runs to win in 192 balls.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 86/4 in 16 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Charles Amini 4(11), Sese Bau 26(28): Charles Amini and Sese Bau are doing damage repair. Although playing with discipline, the two batsmen are not hesitating in playing aerial shots and they are getting runs for it. Nepal bowlers have got a little lose off late. They need to get back and start bowling in the right areas.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 70/4 in 14 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Charles Amini 0(2), Sese Bau 13(20): Papua New Guinea lose their fourth wicket Madhura Dai for just four runs. Charles Amini has come to the middle after Dai’s departure. PNG have batted quick but they have lost wickets in the endeavour. They should bat sensibly and with discipline from here on. They should avoid playing any extravagant shots but play only risk free grounded shots on lose deliveries. OUT! Muhuru Dai c Mandal b Regmi 4(9)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 62/3 in 11 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Muhuru Dai 2(4), Sese Bau 8(14): Bau slams a four on the off side, perfectly piercing the gap between the fielders. Both the batsmen are playing grounded shots right now. Sese Bau times a ball on the off for a couple. Sompal Kami pitches a bouncer and Bau pulls it but it takes the upper edge of the bat and lands on the fine leg area. He gets two runs for it. Lucky for him the ball landed in no man’s land.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 51/3 in 9 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Muhuru Dai 1(1), Sese Bau 0(5): Things are turning ugly for Papua New Guinea. Tony is caught by Alam on the bowling of Sompal Kami. Sompal bowled a brilliant ninth over, a wicket maiden. Two new batsmen at the crease now Muhuru Dai and Sese Bau. OUT! Tony Ura c Alam b Sompal Kami 24(26)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 51/2 in 8 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Tony Ura 24(25), Sese Bau 0(1): Tony Ura, who was attempting big shots till now has slowed down a bit. He is now looking to rotate the strike more often. PNG is not chasing a very big target, hence it’s not required to play risky shots. Tony should look forward towards making a good partnership with Sese Bau, who is yet to get off the mark.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 47/2 in 7 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Tony Ura 21(19), Sese Bau 0(1): Assad Vala fails to judge Sompal Kami’s delivery and gets out leg-before; just what the doctor ordered for Nepal. Sese Bau has arrived at the crease. He is batting along with Tony Ura. PNG now need 178 runs to win. OUT! Assad Vala lbw Sompal Kami 18(20)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 38/1 in 6 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Assad Vala 14(16), Tony Ura 21(18): Tony Ura joins the party, he hits two boundaries. Both the batsmen are batting very well at the moment. Nepal needs to break this partnership early or else it will look threatening later on. Papua New Guinea now need 187 runs to win.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 22/1 in 4 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Assad Vala 12(9), Tony Ura 8(13): Assad Vala is batting pretty well. He slams two more boundaries. This is good batting from him after a special bowling performance early on in the match. Papua New Guinea now need 203 runs to win off 276 deliveries, still a long way to go.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Papua New Guinea 9/1 in 2 overs Target 225 | BATTING: Assad Vala 5(2), Tony Ura 4(8): Papua New Guinea have started batting after restricting Nepal to 224. They have lost a wicket early on on in the innings. Lega Siaka is caught by Khakurel on the bowling of Sompal Kami. Assad Vala has struck a brilliant boundary. He is supported by Tony Ura at the other end. OUT! Lega Siaka c Khakurel b Sompal Kami 0(2)

Innings Break

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 224/8 in 50 overs BATTING: Mahboob Alam 15, Basant Regmi 2: Regmi is the eighth batsman to depart, coming down the track only to miss the line of the delivery completely, and get his off-stump rattled. Alam however, guides his side to 224 with a six over long-on, as well as a triple off the last ball. Meanwhile, Vala finishes as the pick of the bowlers with 3 for 36! OUT! Basant Regmi b Assad Vala 7(7)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 204/7 in 48 overs BATTING: Mahboob Alam 2, Basant Regmi 2: Nepal are crumbling towards the death overs! Kami is dismissed when he is caught by Siaka off the bowling of Vanua for 9. Nepal are then dealt with a major blow when Vesawkar is caught at gully off an attempted switch hit to depart for 42. OUT! Sompal Kami c Siaka b Vanua 9(10), Sharad Vesawkar c Amini b Vala 42(45)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 194/5 in 46 overs BATTING: Sharad Vesawkar 37, Sompal Kami 8: Plenty of comedy of errors going on at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium at the moment! Vesawkar and Kami mess up the running, as does PNG with their fielding, missing out on atleast two run-out opportunities that ultimately results in two valuable runs for Nepal. Vesawkar meanwhile, is batting on 37 at the moment, and will look to guide his side to a big total today.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 181/5 in 44 overs BATTING: Sharad Vesawkar 26, Sompal Kami 2: After a quiet 43rd over, Khadka begins to flex his muscles, smashing the first ball of the 44th over by smashing Vala down the track for a straight boundary! OUT! PNG get the big wicket of Khadka, with the Nepal skipper smashing towards long-off, with John Reva completing the catch at the position. Pressure back on the Nepalis at the moment! OUT! Paras Khadka c John Reva b Assad Vala 58(81)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 167/4 in 42 overs BATTING: Paras Khadka 51, Sharad Vesawkar 26: And Captain Khadka finally gets to his half-century in 73 balls, with the assistance of four boundaries, in the 42nd over. Will he get to his 100 in the remaining eight overs? A handful of big shots can actually get him there, which will definitely help boost his side’s morale!

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 156/4 in 40 overs BATTING: Paras Khadka 48, Sharad Vesawkar 17: Nepal cross the 150-run mark, with more than 10 overs at their disposal. Khadka reverse-sweeps over fly slip, where the fielder fails to hold on to the catch, to take a quick couple of runs. Just two more runs for the Nepal skipper to complete his fifty.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 145/4 in 38 overs BATTING: Paras Khadka 42, Sharad Vesawkar 13: Dropped! Paras Khadka is dropped off the bowling of Dai in the 38th over, giving him a second chance with just nine runs left for him to complete his half-century. Dai tosses the ball up, which Khadka smashes towards the bowler to his left, but isn’t quick enough to complete the catch, that allows Khadka a single.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 134/4 in 36 overs BATTING: Paras Khadka 36(57), Sharad Vesawkar 8(11): Pun is on the verge of bringing up his half-century when he caught by Dai off the bowling of Bau at midwicket, departing for a 92-ball 47 that included just one boundary. The baton of getting the quick runs with a responsible innings has been passed on to skipper Paras Khadka, who is currently batting on 32. OUT! Sagar Pun c Mahuru Dai b Sese Bau 47(92)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 103/3 in 30 overs BATTING: Sagar Pun 42(87), Paras Khadka 20(36): Khadka and Pun have begun to get the quick runs now, helping their side cross the 100-run mark at the end of 30 overs. Pun is batting in the 40s at the moment, while Khadka has quickly moved to the 20s with a few good strokes.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 82/3 in 25 overs BATTING: Sagar Pun 35(73), Paras Khadka 6(20): Nepal have added only 10 runs in the last five overs, with Khadka yet to start firing with the bat following Malla’s dismissal, with Nepal’s scoring rate still a little over three at the moment. (A final score of less than 200 does not appear to be a very strong one for Nepal).

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 72/3 in 20 overs BATTING: Sagar Pun 24(41), Paras Khadka 2(9): Nepal’s run flow, which was flourishing during the presence of Malla and Pun, has suddenly dried up after the former is caught by Siaka at short third man off the bowling of Bau to depart for 36, bringing an end to the 66-run third-wicket partnership between the two. OUT! Gyanendra Malla c Lega Siaka b Sese Bau 36(52)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 61/2 in 15 overs BATTING: Gyanendra Malla 34(44), Sagar Pun 24(41): Malla and Pun have added 60 runs for the third wicket so far, and are progressing really well at the moment, with Malla slowly preparing himself for his half-century. Nepal are back in the game, for now, with PNG desperately needing a breakthrough at the moment.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 38/2 in 10 overs BATTING: Gyanendra Malla 14(24), Sagar Pun 21(31): Pun and Malla have batted responsibly so far in their innings, having added 37 runs for the third wicket so far after the passage of 10 overs. Both batsmen have hit a boundary each. Meanwhile, the opening spells of Vanua (who has caused the damage for Nepal so far) as well as Chad Soper is coming to an end soon.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE Nepal 15/2 in 5 overs BATTING: Gyanendra Malla 10(9), Sagar Pun 5(16): Nepal are off to a disastrous start after electing to bat, with Norman Vanua removing openers Anil Mandal and Subash Khakurel for ducks, with Nepal getting reduced to 1 for 2 in the very first over. Ominous signs for the Nepalis, with Pun and Malla needing to stitch an crucial partnership at this stage in order to rescue their side back to their feet. OUT! Anil Mandal lbw Norman Vanua 0(3), Subash Khakurel lbw Norman Vanua 0(2)

TOSS: Nepal win the toss, and elect to bat!

PNG lost their first wicket with 35 runs on board, with Tony Ura hitting five boundaries and a six during his 26-ball 30 before getting dismissed off the bowling of Nepal skipper Paras Khadka. PNG lost regular wickets thereafter, and appeared to spiral towards a major defeat after losing their sixth wicket with just 138 on board. Vala, who had earlier put up a good performance with the ball, shone with the bat as well as he defied the Nepal attack with his 107-ball 87, which helped pave the way for his side’s victory. Vala’s brave innings did not spare the fans from a bit of drama towards the latter stages of the match though, as he was dismissed in the penultimate over, leaving PNG to score six off as many balls in the last over. Thankfully for them, Reva completed the formality for them, taking two doubles before hitting the winning boundary.

Squads:

Nepal: Mahboob Alam, Prithu Baskota, Bikram Sob, Naresh Budayair, Mahesh Chhetri (wk), Shakti Gauchan, Karan KC, Paras Khadka (c), Subash Khakurel, Gyanendra Malla, Anil Mandal, Basant Regmi, Sagar Pun, Sompal Kami, Sharad Vesawkar.

PNG: Charles Amini (c), Sese Bau, Mahuru Dai, Hiri Hiri, Vani Morea, Loa Nou, Nosaina Pokana, John Reva, Lega Siaka, Chad Soper, Tony Ura (wk), Assad Vala, Norman Vanua, Jack Vare