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Cricket WCQ: Nigeria tops group after beating Sierra Leone

Nigeria on Tuesday defeated Sierra Leone by 11 runs to top group B in a nervous game at the ongoing ICC U-19 World Cup Africa division two qualifiers in Abuja.
The Junior Yellow-Greens won the toss and elected to bat in the match to determine the team with a 100 percent record in group B, after two wins for both countries in two earlier matches.
Star players Paul Pam and Selim Saliu opened the batting order for Nigeria, putting up an excellent partnership to score for the team before Pam was sent to the stands in the 27th over.
Pam’s dismissal was the opportunity that the Sierra Leoneans needed to dismiss the host successfully in the next 20 overs, limiting Nigeria to 184 runs, all out in 47.4 overs.
The second innings meant Nigeria needed to defend the score against a strong-willed opposition whose captain, John Bangura, took over steering the team’s ship.
Bangura, who played 87 runs — not out in 118 balls — raced the run score for his country before Nigeria’s Prosper Useni halted their pace, claiming 6 wickets in the process.
The Sierra Leoneans scored 173 all out in 41.5 overs and the loss means they set up a clash with Kenya, winner of group A, on Thursday while Nigeria will face Malawi, the runner-up in group A.
Useni won the player of the match award with bowling statistics of 6 wickets and 26 runs in 6.5 overs.

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