The race for gold continues
Four of the five teams playing in the South Pacific Games cricket tournament are still in the hunt for the gold medal after the round three fixtures.
Papua New Guinea played hosts Samoa at the West ground of the Samoa Gardens, and despite the home support, Samoa capitulated at the hands of some fine Papua New Guinea batting. They scored 340/9 from their 50 overs, John Ovia top-scoring with 85. Twenty year old Assadollah Vala also chipped in with 67. Faavae Faaofo was the pick of the Samoan bowlers with 4/55 from his ten overs, and he was the only Samoan bowler to go for less than a run a ball.
In reply, Samoa never looked in with a chance. The Papua New Guinea bowlers bowled tightly, and only two Samoans reached double figures. The last three wickets all fell to John Ovia as he took a hat-trick, finishing with figures of 3/10 as Papua New Guinea won by 253 runs.
Samoa now get two days rest before they take on tournament whipping boys New Caledonia on Saturday. They were also in action today against Tonga on the East ground.
They batted first and fared slightly better than in their match against Fiji on day two, scoring 53 before being bowled out after 26 overs. 'Aisake Haukinima was the pick of the Tongan bowlers with 5/13, whilst Tevita Taulani also bowled well, taking 4/15. Tonga had little problem chasing down the total, losing just one wicket in the eight overs they took.