A full-strength Italy proved too much for third-seeded Jersey on the third day of the ongoing Europe T20 World Cup Qualifier Regional Final at Edinburgh,
A full-strength Italy proved too much for third-seeded Jersey on the third day of the ongoing Europe T20 World Cup Qualifier Regional Final at Edinburgh, with the contributions of the county-contracted pair crucial to securing a crucial 25-run win that keeps them in touch with favorites Scotland and Ireland at the top of the table. Meanwhile, Ireland made quick work of Austria, scoring a record 226-4 before bowling the Austrians out for 98 to leapfrog Scotland into first place.
The major game of the day was the match between Jersey and Italy at Goldenacre, where Jersey were forced to repent bowling first as Justin Mosca and Ben Manenti piled up a 72-run opening partnership inside 8 overs. Legspinner Ben Ward’s second ball broke the stand, skidding on with the arm as Manenti played around it, and Mosca followed him to the pavilion three balls later, falling one short of fifty as a leading edge flew to Sumerauer at cover, but the double breakthrough did not slow the scoring. Anthony Mosca and Madsen (the latter making his much-anticipated debut) took Italy to three figures before Chuggy Perchard struck twice in two balls: Mosca driving high and straight but well held by Britton at long on, and Stewart chopping his first ball onto his stumps.
Madsen, on the other hand, seemed unaffected, scoring fifty on debut by smacking a low full toss from Ward over the square rope for six and then lofting the following delivery over midfield for four. He went for a 30-ball 52 but failed to clear Jenner on the midwicket rope the next ball, but Marcus Campopiano provided a flourish at the end. On the opening ball of the final over, he miscued Perchard up toward long off, allowing a difficult opportunity to be spilled by Charlie Brennan running back from extra cover. Campopiano made Jersey pay for the drop by hitting the following three deliveries for six straight to push his total above 180 before holing out at the far end.
Trying to win with a score of 184. Jersey had to take some risks, but the elevation of Julius Sumerauer to open didn’t work out, as he was caught off Harry Manenti by his brother for 9, and wickets continued to fall throughout the chase. Jersey remained in the game because of Nick Greenwood and Asa Tribe’s half-century stand for the third wicket, but they were always chasing the rate as it creeped past tens, and the scoreboard pressure would catch up with them.
Greenwood holed out off Ben Manenti in the 11th for 32, and the remainder of the middle order, although gaining starts, would follow suit. After a 37-run stand for the fifth wicket between Jonty Jenner and Ben Ward, the procession resumed as Ward was caught off Jaspreet Singh. By the end of the game, the asking rate was in the twenties, and Jersey was eight down. After clubbing Stewart for six over midwicket, Perchard was bounced out next ball on the pull, and Eliot Miles could only flat bat the final ball back to Stewart as Jersey were bowled out 25 short in exactly 20 overs.
Over at the Grange, Ireland had already secured a resounding victory over Austria, boosting their net run rate. Austria had reason to celebrate early on, with Paul Stirling sending Amit Nathwani straight to Razmal Shingwal at cover in the third over, but it was all Ireland from there. Lorcan Tucker and Ross Adair (the latter filling in for Andrew Balbirnie, who was hurt during the warm-up) started to bully the Austrian attack. In the next six overs, the partnership accumulated 65 runs before Adair was bowled for a 24-ball 46 by an Abdullah Akbarjan slower ball. Tucker took off from there, with help from Harry Tector and Neil Rock, the latter hitting a personal best 36 off 18. Tucker finished just six runs short of a century, unbeaten on 94 off 51 balls, leading Ireland to their highest-ever T20I total.
Chasing 227 was never going to be easy, and the Austrian response got off to the worst possible start when Iqbal Hossain was caught off Mark Adair’s first ball, popping a leading edge to point. Adair went on to achieve his best T20I statistics of 4-13 as the rest of the innings followed the tone established by the first ball; however, Shigiwal’s tenacious 33 off 32 and Aqib Iqbal’s gung-ho 17-ball 29 provided some encouraging notes for Austria as they were bowled out for 98.
The final match of the day was a surprise, easy victory for Germany over Denmark at the Grange. The Danes appeared to be struggling in the absence of their captain, Hamid Shah, as they were limited to 124-9, with Joshua van Heerden top-hitting in the reply as Germany won by six wickets.
Dieter Klein got the Danes off to a bad start, bowling short to Laegsgaard first up and holding a nicked pull held by Richardson before removing Abdul Hashmi’s off stump four balls later. With an initially cautious partnership of 77, Taranjit Singh and Saif Ahmad stabilized the innings, but after Elam Barathi removed both in quick succession, the impetus switched back to Germany. Following Singh’s dismissal in the 14th over, Denmark added only 29 runs at the expense of seven wickets, leaving the Germans requiring only a run per ball to win.
Despite Venkat Ganesan’s early run-out, Joshua van Heerden and Michael Richardson pushed them to 64-1 on the powerplay and half-way home before the field stretched. Shaheen Mahmood threatened to disrupt the pursuit by taking three consecutive wickets through the middle, including both set bats, but there simply weren’t enough runs on the board to call the game. Faisal bin Mubashir and Dylan Blignaut held their nerve to send their team home with 19 balls to spare, with Blignaut closing the day with a six past the midwicket boundary.
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