A confident Scotland will face newcomers Papua New Guinea (PNG) in the fifth match of the T20 World Cup 2021 on Tuesday at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground (Ministry Turf 1). The clash will be a Group B encounter in Round 1 of the T20 World Cup.
Both Scotland and Papua New Guinea experienced completely contrasting fortunes in their respective tournament openers in the ICC event. Scotland pulled off a mini-upset on the opening day of the T20 World Cup, defeating Bangladesh by six runs. Scotland recovered from 53 for 6 to post 140 for 9. Their bowlers then came up with an impressive show to restrict the Bangla Tigers to 134 for 7.
Papua New Guinea, meanwhile, had a tough debut game in the T20 World Cup, as they were embarrassed by ten wickets by Oman. Batting first, PNG managed only 129 for 9. Their bowlers were also completely ineffective, as Oman ran amok in the chase.
T20 World Cup 2021: PNG face uphill task against Scotland
There was a lot to like about Scotland's performance in their opening match of the T20 World Cup 2021. Batting first, they had crumbled to 53 for 6. However, Chris Greaves played a brilliant counter-attacking knock of 45 off 28 balls to swing the momentum his team's way. Mark Watt also chipped in with a crucial 17-ball 22.
Scotland got away despite a batting collapse against Bangladesh, but they would want their top and middle-order to fire if they wish to progress in the T20 World Cup 2021. George Munsey, captain Kyle Coetzer and Richie Berrington are proven performers for Scotland, while Matthew Cross and Calum MacLeod, too, are capable of scoring runs.
In the bowling department, Greaves again stood out. He claimed the massive scalps of Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim to derail Bangladesh's chase. It was a performance that would give both Greaves and Scotland a lot of confidence. Overall, their entire bowling outfit was hugely impressive. Bradley Wheal claimed three for 24, while Josh Davey and Mark Watt kept things extremely tight.
PNG, meanwhile, suffered with both bat and ball in their opening T20 World Cup 2021 encounter against Oman. Captain Assad Vala (56) and Charles Amini (37) were the only ones who stood up with the bat.
During their partnership, PNG looked to be in control. However, once the stand was broken, their batting disintegrated quickly. The likes of Tony Ura, Lega Siaka and Sese Bau will be expected to get among the runs.
The story was similar in the bowling department. Not a single PNG bowler could make an impression against Oman openers Aqib Ilyas and Jatinder Singh. Damien Ravu, Nosaina Pokana and Charles Amini have claimed a few wickets in T20Is and will definitely be eager to perform better against Scotland. PNG could find it tough to put it across the Scots, though.
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Prediction: Scotland to win match five of T20 World Cup 2021.