14 Jan 2014

Sport: PNG cricketers beat Kenya

11:28 am on 14 January 2014

Papua New Guinea have opened their Cricket World Cup qualifying campaign with an emphatic eight wicket win over Kenya in New Plymouth.

Lega Siaka and Assad Vala both notched centuries, and Raymond Haoda bagged four wickets, as the Barramundi's chased down their target of 250 in the 43rd over.

Vala was named man of the match for his 104 not out, which anchored the PNG innings, in what was a welcome return to form.

Barramundi's coach Peter Anderson says, after a heavy diet of Twenty20 cricket over the last few months, he was pleased with how his squad adapted to the one-day game.

"We haven't had a lot of 50 over cricket but the guys have responded very well. I mean it's very difficult going so much diet of 20 [over] cricket to 50 over but the guys have responded well and yeah it was a really good batting display today. We had a couple of rocky warm-up games and maybe it's going to be back to front this time from [The Twenty20 World Cup Qualifiers in] Dubai where we started very strong and fell away a little bit".

Hong Kong, the United Arab Emirates and the Netherlands were also winners on day one of competition.

The Barramundi's next match is against Uganda in New Plymouth on Thursday.