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Australia cruise past Oman, Uganda claim first-ever T20 World Cup win

Australia secured a 39-run victory over Oman, while Uganda claimed their first T20 World Cup win, defeating Papua New Guinea by three wickets.

Australia’s Marcus Stoinis celebrates after scoring a half-century against Oman. (Photo: Getty Images)

By: Vivek Mishra

Australia began their bid for a grand slam of major cricket titles with a 39-run victory over Oman, while Uganda secured their first T20 World Cup win with a three-wicket victory over Papua New Guinea on Wednesday.

Marcus Stoinis hit an unbeaten 67 off 36 balls to propel Australia to 164-5 and then took three wickets for 19 runs, restricting Oman to 125-9 at Kensington Oval.

“It was a nice start,” said Stoinis, who was named player of the match.

Stoinis struck six sixes and two fours during his innings, helping Australia recover from 50-3. David Warner added stability with a half-century as Australia bounced back after captain Mitchell Marsh and Glenn Maxwell were dismissed off successive balls by seamer Mehran Khan in the 11th over.

Stoinis then dominated a 102-run fourth-wicket partnership with Warner, taking the game away from Oman. Warner scored 56 off 51 balls, hitting six fours and one six, before being dismissed in the penultimate over. This innings moved Warner past former captain Aaron Finch as Australia’s top run-scorer in T20 Internationals with 3,155 runs.

Four of Stoinis’ six sixes came in the 15th over, bowled by Mehran, accelerating Australia’s score significantly in the last six overs.

Despite an early scare with the dismissals of Travis Head, Marsh, and Maxwell, Australia’s experience saw them through. Mitchell Starc, who left the field with cramp before completing his spell, took two wickets, as did Nathan Ellis and Adam Zampa.

In another match on Wednesday, Uganda claimed their first ever T20 World Cup win with a three-wicket victory over Papua New Guinea at Providence Stadium in a low-scoring encounter.

Papua New Guinea were bowled out for 77, and despite a shaky start at 26-5, Uganda reached the target in 18.2 overs. Riazat Ali Shah top-scored with 33 and formed a crucial sixth-wicket partnership of 35 with Juma Miyagi (13). Charles Amini dropped Riazat when he was on eight, a mistake that proved costly for PNG.

PNG’s efforts to defend a low total were hampered by loose bowling, conceding 15 wides. Riazat played a disciplined innings, and Uganda celebrated their victory with dancing on the edge of the field.

“That’s a pretty special win for us. You know, first win at the World Cup,” said Uganda skipper Brian Masaba. “It doesn’t get more special than this. I’m super proud of this group of guys. I mean, they’ve put in the work, they’ve put in such a shift. And to get a win for their country at the World Cup is very, very special,” he added.

Masaba won the toss and put Papua New Guinea in to bat, and Alpesh Ramjani removed PNG captain Assad Vala with the second ball of the innings. Sese Bau and Tony Ura were both caught by Roger Mukasa off Juma Miyagi and Cosmas Kyewuta, respectively, leaving PNG struggling at 19-3 in the fourth over.

Lega Siaka made 12 off 17 balls before being run out, and Charles Amini was bowled by Frank Nsubuga. Hiri Hiri (15) and Kiplin Doriga (12) were the only PNG batsmen to reach double figures as they were bowled out with five balls remaining in their innings.

(AFP)

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