ICC Associate nations- Netherlands, Scotland, Ireland & Oman battled out in the Quadrangular series hosted by the latter. The Irish national team granted full member and Test status by the council in 2017 faced challenges from other nations in T20I format. A total of 6 matches were scheduled among the 4 nations at the Al Emarat Cricket Stadium in Muscat, Oman scheduled from 9-22 February, 2019.
Eyeing on the qualification for the 2020 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, the participants aimed to start their journey on a positive note in their first international assignment of the year. The Dutch got the better of Scotland in its first encounter while the hosts, Oman faced consecutive defeats against Ireland and the Netherlands. Oman, thus failed to create an impact in the Quadrangular series. However, the exposure seemed to have provided a competitive platform for the hosts.
Having termed as “cricketing minnows” post its performance at the Quadrangular tournament, Oman hosted the Scottish cricket team for a 3 match ODI series. However, the situation became even more complicated for the hosts during the 1st encounter of the ODI series, as they registered the fourth lowest score in List A cricket, managing a meagre total of 24. Scotland was considered as hot favourites to win the series dominating Oman cricket. After being put into bat first, Oman showcased altogether different performance from the one played a day before. A steady start from its top order batting line-up and useful contributions towards the end helped the team to post fighting total. Khurram Nawaz powerpacked knock of 64 off 45 balls towards the end helped Oman to revive their innings post jolting quickly after the captain, Khawar Ali found support in Mohammed Nadeem to dominate during the middle overs. Posting a score of 248/8 in 50 overs, Oman’s bowling unit wrapped up the Scottish innings in 40 overs to register victory by 93 runs for the home side. Though, Oman failed to grab the series post the marginal defeat by 15 runs chasing a target of 303 runs during the 3rd and final ODI in today’s encounter, it certainly find glory after a steep fall. With Oman’s road towards gaining an ODI status seems still long way, such powerpack performance by the cricketing minnows will prepare them for bigger challenges ahead.
With the all-important ICC World Cricket League Division 2 approaching in April 2019, where Oman is scheduled to travel to Namibia, it aims to regain its confidence and elevate their performance to next level.