OMAN VS US ODI SERIES: Mendis lauds bowlers after series win
Oman's cricket coach Duleep Mendis lauded his bowlers as they shone in the first two matches against the visiting US side to clinch the three-match ODI series on Tuesday.
The hosts recorded another big win in the second ODI match at the Al Amerat ground in a day-night match and Mendis credited his bowlers for the victories.
Speaking to Muscat Daily after his boys recorded a 89-run win to take an unassailable 2-0 lead, the former Sri Lankan star said, “I am very happy with my bowlers performances in the two matches. They were the key to both the victories.
“I am also satisfied with the overall fielding standards of the team and both bowling and fielding displays have made me proud.”
However, Mendis, who is also Oman Cricket's chief development officer (CDO), expressed his unhappiness over the batting performances.
“It has been disappointing as the top-order batsmen failed to fire. I would like to get scores of 250 and more in a match and on both occasions, they failed [Oman could score only 225 and 189].
“It is the onus of the top-order batsmen to set a strong foundation. We were lucky to have our tail wag but it is for the top five batsmen to set up a big total,” he said.
“The series has been very beneficial in assessing the players. We hope to maintain the momentum with a win on Thursday ahead of our Dubai trip, where we play against a strong Hong Kong team three more games from December 10-14,” said Mendis.
The coach said that these matches will give him a good idea before he finalises his team for the ICC WCL Division Two in Namibia in February.
A top-two finish in the six-team tournament in Namibia can help Mendis' men to clinch a spot in the World Cup Qualifiers in Zimbabwe.
On Tuesday, in the second match and the only day-night game of the series, Jay Odedara's allround show guided Oman to an 89-run win over US.
Oman had won the first game by 117 runs on Monday.
Opting to bat first, Oman top-order failed again as it slumped to 97 for five at the halfway stage. Arun Poulose and Jatinder Singh left after making 39 each. Late contributions from Odedara (38), captain Sultan Ahmed (24) and Ahmad Fayyaz Butt (22) guided Oman to a fighting 189 for nine.
Timil Patel led the bowling honours for US, with four for 28.
Chasing 190 to win, US was bowled out for paltry 100 in the 41st over. Khawar Ali picked three while Ajay Lalcheta, Odedara and Bilal Khan all bagged two wickets each.
Brief scores: Oman 189-9 in 50 overs (Poulose 39, Jatinder 39, Odedara 38, Ahmed 24, Butt 22; Patel 4-28) beat US 100 all out in 40.1 overs (Ravi Timbawala 23; Ali 3-21, Lalcheta 2-13, Odedara 2-19, Khan 2-27).