In a gripping showdown at the Asia region qualifiers, Nepal and Oman have secured their spots in the 2024 men’s T20 World Cup, which will be hosted in the West Indies and the USA. Nepal clinched a remarkable victory over the United Arab Emirates (UAE) by eight wickets, while Oman got the better of Bahrain with a convincing ten-wicket win.
Nepal’s second appearance in the T20 World Cup
This achievement marks Nepal’s second appearance in the T20 World Cup, a decade after their first qualification in 2014. The teams’ remarkable performances have now brought the total number of qualified teams to 18, with the final two spots set to be determined at the Africa qualifier, concluding by the end of the month.
Automatic berths and top qualifiers
Hosts West Indies and the USA have automatic berths in the tournament, alongside Australia, England, India, New Zealand, Netherlands, Pakistan, South Africa, and Sri Lanka, who secured their spots by being the top eight teams in the 2022 T20 World Cup. Afghanistan and Bangladesh, being the next highest-ranked teams, also secured their berths. Ireland and Scotland emerged victorious from the Europe region qualifiers, with Papua New Guinea earning their spot from the East Asia-Pacific region, and Canada representing the Americas region.
Nepal’s victory over UAE
In a packed Mulpani Cricket Ground, UAE decided to bat first and posted a total of 134/9 in their allotted 20 overs, with Vriitya Aravind being their top run-scorer with 64 runs from 51 deliveries. Kushal Malla emerged as the star bowler for Nepal, taking three wickets for just 11 runs in his 3-over spell.
Nepal’s response was swift as they chased down the target in 17.1 overs, thanks to an impressive performance from opener Aasif Sheikh, who top-scored with 64 runs from 51 balls, including 7 fours and a six.
Oman’s dominance over Bahrain
In the first semi-final, Bahrain struggled to reach a total of 106/9 due to Oman’s stellar bowling performance. Aqib Ilyas played a crucial role, securing four wickets for just 10 runs in his allotted 4 overs, which included a maiden over.
Oman’s openers showcased their batting prowess, with Kashyap Prajapati smashing an unbeaten 57 runs from 44 balls, and Pratik Athavale contributing an unbeaten 50 runs from 42 deliveries. They completed the chase in 14.2 overs, securing Oman’s place in the 2024 T20 World Cup.