8 Jul 2013

Sport: Vanuatu and PNG to square off in EAP U19 final

11:03 am on 8 July 2013

Vanuatu will meet defending champions Papua New Guinea in Monday's East Asia Pacific Under 19 cricket final.

The Melanesians earnt their place in the decider after winning a tri-series tournament on the Sunshine Coast, featuring Samoa and Fiji.

Captain Nalin Nipiko starred again in the final round robin match, nabbing 4 for 26 with the ball and then top-scoring with 19 as Fiji's total of 85 was surpassed with three wickets to spare.

Their opponents PNG have spent the past week playing on bouncy wickets in Darwin but national head coach Peter Anderson, who is helping with the Garamuts, is confident the players can adjust to the turf.

"It will be interesting and we all know cricket's a funny game and you certainly have to keep your guards up. They're very much aware of it and they fought ery hard against Australia. Even though the total of 112, you probably think was not a very high total but to really occupy the crease against a very quick wicket and first-class bowling was a fantastic effort so I'm really confident our guys will adapt. We've just got to go out there and play cricket and keep it simple."

The winner will qualify for next year's Under 19 World Cup in Dubai.