Richie Berrington's 70 from 49 balls lifted Scotland to their highest T20 World Cup score of 165-9 before they dismissed Papua New Guinea for 148 to win by 17 runs in Muscat; watch T20 World Cup live in full on Sky Sports between now and November 14
Sunday 24 October 2021 14:22, UK
Scotland put themselves on the brink of a place in the T20 World Cup Super 12 stage with a 17-run victory over Papua New Guinea in Muscat.
Richie Berrington's 70 from 49 balls provided the backbone of the Scotland innings as they made 165-9 - their highest T20 World Cup score - before dismissing a battling PNG side for 148 to follow up their win over Bangladesh in their opening Group B game.
Papua New Guinea, beaten by 10 wickets by Oman on Sunday on their debut in the competition, made an encouraging start by removing both Scotland openers early on, skipper Kyle Coetzer (six) bowled by Kabua Morea and George Munsey (15) caught by Lega Siaka from a skied top edge off Chad Soper.
That brought Berrington together with Matthew Cross and after a somewhat cautious start they upped the pace dramatically after reaching the 10-over drinks break on 67-2.
The first three overs after the restart went for 42 runs and the pair went on to extend their partnership to 92 - another Scotland T20 World Cup record - before Cross picked out Charles Amini at deep mid-wicket off the bowling of Simon Atai (1-20) to fall for 45 from 36 balls.
Calum MacLeod (10) added a further 33 with Berrington before ballooning a catch to Morea off Soper to spark a late Scotland collapse as six wickets fell for 15 runs in the final two overs.
Berrington quickly became Soper's third victim (3-24) as he flat-batted a catch to Armini in the deep, but his clinically-struck 70, which included three sixes and six fours, is Scotland's highest individual T20 World Cup score.
The innings then ended with four wickets, including a run out, in a manic final over from Morea (4-31).
Despite that late stumble, Scotland's total always looked out of reach for Papua New Guinea, whose highest run chase is 127, and so it proved, although they made a valiant attempt as they reached 148.
Josh Davey and Brad Wheal (1-41) made early inroads into the PNG batting line-up, while Alasdair Evans (1-22) removed skipper Assad Vala for 18 as the tournament debutants slumped to 35-5 after six overs.
Sese Bau then made a steady 24, but there was still some fight left in the PNG team as Norman Vanua (47) and Kiplin Doriga (18) launched a late counter-attack just as Scotland appeared to be easing to victory.
The pair put on 53 for the seventh wicket, with 45 runs coming in one three-over spell, until Mark Watt (1-23) checked their charge by having Doriga stumped by Cross.
Davey then returned to the attack to end Vanua's knock, caught behind by Cross, and he ended the innings in similar fashion by dismissing Soper (16) to secure another T20 World Cup best for Scotland with figures of 4-18.
Richie Berrington - An easy one to start with the straight-hitting 34-year-old setting a new scoring record for Scotland at the T20 World Cup. His 70 included a monster six measured at 97 metres over long-on - easily the longest of the tournament so far - and he also added the second longest of 87 metres. He then made a sharp catch at point to dismiss Atai.
Matthew Cross - Played an excellent supporting role for Berrington with two fours and two sixes in his 36-ball 45 and the wicketkeeper also contributed in the field with three catches and his timely stumping of Doriga.
Kabua Morea and Chad Soper - The two PNG seamers kept Scotland in check early on, going for six and eight runs respectively in their first two overs, and they earned their reward with late wickets for excellent figures. The pair also struck a couple of sweet sixes late on.
Charles Amini - Failed to make his mark with bat and ball but his excellent catches in the deep to dismiss Cross and Berrington exemplified some tidy fielding and catching by PNG.
Norman Vanua - Injected some late life into the game as Scotland looked to be cruising to victory and was gutted to fall just short of a deserved half-century as he made 47 from 37 balls, including two sixes and two fours.
Josh Davey - Another record-setter for Scotland with 4-18 and his late dismissals of Vanua and Soper settled a few Scotland nerves as some big-hitting from PNG put them under some late pressure.
The second batch of Group A matches will be played on Wednesday with Netherlands taking on Namibia from 11am, followed by Ireland against Sri Lanka at 3pm.
Ireland defeated Netherlands by seven wickets in their opening match on Monday, while Sri Lanka eased past Namibia by the same margin.
Group B concludes on Thursday with Bangladesh facing Papua New Guinea (11am) and Scotland taking on Oman (3pm).
There are also four more warm-up matches on Wednesday with England playing New Zealand in their final warm-up game - live on Sky Sports Cricket from 10.50am - ahead of their tournament opener against West Indies on Saturday.