Canadian men suffer first loss at ICC T20 World Cup Qualifier in Abu Dhabi

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — Canada suffered its first defeat at the ICC Men's T20 World Cup Qualifier, losing to Hong Kong by 32 runs Thursday.

The Canadian men (3-1-0) had previously beaten Jersey, Nigeria and Ireland.

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Hong Kong won the toss and elected to bat, finishing at 150 for seven after its 20 overs at Tolerance Oval. Kinchit Shah led the attack at 59 not out.

Canada could only manage 118 for nine in its 20 overs. Rizwan Cheema was leading scorer with 20. Nitish Kumar, who had notched three straight half-centuries, scored 19 runs.

The 14-country event, which runs through Nov. 2, offers six spots in the main tournament set for Australia in 2020.

The teams are divided into two groups of seven with Canada leading Group B, which includes the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong, Ireland, Jersey, Nigeria and Oman.

Canada plays Oman (3-1-0) on Friday in a battle of the top two teams in the group.

The two group winners qualify directly for the T20 World Cup. Teams finishing second and third meet in playoffs with the winners moving on. The losers from the two playoffs face the fourth-placed teams in the group with the winners also advancing.

The six qualifiers will join Australia, Pakistan, India, England, South Africa, New Zealand, West Indies, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh at the 2020 ICC T20 World Cup, which takes place next October.

Canada failed to qualify for the six previous tournaments.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 24, 2019.

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