Babar Hayat leads Hong Kong to victory over Papua New Guinea but may miss last two ODIs because of injury
Skipper stops the rot as the home side recover from 111 for six to score 269 and then dismiss the visitors for 183.
Captain Babar Hayat smashed 77 runs in an anchoring role as he led Hong Kong to a 106-run victory over Papua New Guinea in the first one-day international at Mission Road on Friday.
Hayat, in his first home match as skipper, helped Hong Kong recover from 111 for six to post a challenging score of 269 all out with two balls remaining.
Watch: three wickets each for Nadeem Ahmed and Anshuman Rath
In reply, Papua New Guinea were dismissed for 163 in 38.2 overs after having reached 11 for two from 17 overs.
“It was a great moment for me as first game as captain to get the win and to play well,” said Hayat, who may have to miss the remaining two matches because of a groin injury.
“There was a lot of turn out there and our spinners bowled really well. I’m not sure about the groin, I will see the physio tomorrow and decide whether I can play in the next match.”
It was the introduction of spin that changed the course of both innings, Hong Kong fell from 105 for two to 111 for six after PNG’s Mahuru Dai dislodged Nizakat Khan for 45.
But Hayat survived the carnage to make 77 off 95 balls, during which he was seen limping while attempting to run between wickets.
In the PNG innings it was Anshuman Rath who turned the tide for Hong Kong as the left-arm tweaker picked up three for 22 from 10 overs.
Hong Kong’s two other spinners Nadeem Ahmed (three for 37) and Ehsan Khan (two for 37) were also among the wickets.
Hong Kong coach Simon Cook was particularly pleased with the result, especially how the Hong Kong batsman were able to rebuild after a flurry of wickets.
“I was really happy with how we stuck in there after we lost wickets, the guys in the lower order made some important contributions that helped us get to a decent target,” said Cook.
“The wicket definitely deteriorated in the afternoon, which probably made our target a more difficult proposition for them.”
“I’m looking us to improve our rotation of the strike in the next game, which will hopefully equal a few more runs from the top order.”
The second ODI is on Sunday with tickets available at ticketflap. The final match is on Tuesday.