Muscat: Oman showed on Thursday why they are tough to beat at home, curbing all the natural flamboyance to chase down a modest 178 for a hard-fought 5-wicket win against USA in an ICC Cricket World Cup League 2 game at Oman Cricket Academy Ground One in Al Amerat.
Oman has now won both the games in the tri-series, keeping the USA winless after it lost to Nepal in the first game.
USA bowled and fielded exceptionally well to make runs hard to score for Oman which showed the grit to go for a win in a different way. Taking the slow and steady route to reaching the target, Oman batsmen dug in their heels after USA captain Saurabh Netravalkar removed openers Jatinder Singh and Shoaib Khan cheaply.
Relying on building the partnerships in the face of a menacing US attack, Oman finally surpassed the target in the final over, scoring 179 for 6 with Sandeep Goud and Naseem Khushi remaining not out at 27 and 15 runs respectively.
Oman now has 20 points from 12 games followed by USA at 12 from 14. Nepal has played only 6 matches so far with 3 wins and 3 losses. USA will take on Nepal on Friday.
Earlier Oman put USA under the mat as left-arm quick Bilal Khan removed opener Steven Taylor and Monank Patel in his first two overs, setting the stage for an all-out assault by the hosts. USA innings was soon in tatters, reeling from 48 for 5 to 96 for 8 before the revival came through a dogged 66-run partnership between Elmore Hutchinson (49 not out off 61) and Karima Gore (44 off 46).
Mohammad Nadeem, who had earlier dismissed the dangerous looking Jaskaran Malhotra for 21, came back on to trap Gore in front and break the partnership. Oman did not waste much time, dismissing USA for 178 in the 45th over.
Brief scores: USA 178 all out in 44.4 overs (Elmore Hutchinson 49 – 3x4, 2x6, Karima Gore 44 – 3x4, 1x6, Jaskaran Malhotra 21 – 2x6. Ayaan Khan 2-29, Mohammad Nadeem 2-34, Bilal Khan 2-49) Oman(Suraj Kumar 35 – 3x6, Mohammad Nadeem 32 – 1x4, Zeeshan Maqsood 31 – 1x4, Sandeep Goud 27 not out – 1x4, 1x6. Saurabh Netravalkar 3-39) by 5 wickets.