Papua New Guinea remain top of the table at the East-Asia Pacific qualifier for the 2024 Men's T20 World Cup after a dominant performance against the Philippines today in Port Moresby.
The home side batted first after captain Assad Vala won the toss. Tony Ura provided the runs early on in the PNG innings with 36. It wasn't until his dismissal in the 12th over that their innings really came together though. Lega Siaka and Hiri Hiri put on 78 for the fifth wicket before the latter was out for 46, scored from 27 balls.
Siaka batted until the penultimate ball of the innings, reaching 43 from 31 balls. Three Philippines bowlers took two wickets as the hosts racked up 162-7 from their 20 overs.
Kabua Morea bowled superbly at the start of the Philippines reply, taking five wickets in his first three overs as they collapsed to 18-6. A recovery of sorts was led by Grant Russ who scored 18 but there were no other double digit scores and the Philippines were bowled out for 45, losing by 117 runs.
Earlier, Japan were bowled out for 131 by Vanuatu, with captain Kendel Kadowaki-Fleming scoring 65 from 54 balls. Nalin Nipiko was the pick of the Vanuatu bowlers with 4-17, whilst Patrick Matautaava took 3-10.
Vanuatu batted out their overs in reply, but the only score of note was Andrew Mansale's 29. Ryan Drake was the pick of the Japan bowlers with 3-16 as they kept Vanuatu to 110-8, losing by 21 runs.
After a rest day tomorrow, play resumes on Tuesday, when the so-far unbeaten Papua New Guinea and Japan face off. Philippines take on Vanuatu in the other match.