PNG and Vanuatu have confirmed their status as favourites to finish in the top two with clinical performances on day two of the ICC East-Asia Pacific Under 19 Cricket Trophy at the Maroochydore Cricket Club on Monday.

PNG were relentless with the ball and in the field bowling Fiji out for just 63 in the overcast conditions. PNG then chased down the total with the loss of only one wicket in 11.1 overs.

"It was a good win for us and with no final at this tournament we have to ensure we continue to build a strong net run rate to ensure top spot," said PNG team manager Raymond Haoda Snr.

Sese Bau was exceptional with the ball taking the wickets of four Fiji top order batsmen and clean bowling three of them on his way to figures of 4-13 from eight overs. He was well supported by Toua Tom who took the key wicket of Toko Bogidrau and picked up man of the match with figures of 3-16 off 9.2.

In its reply PNG was never really challenged with Lega Siaka being the only player dismissed when he was caught off the bowling of Tukana Tavo for 19. Rogeauka Roge and Chris Kent comfortably batted out the rest of the innings to pass Fiji's score in just the 12th over.

Vanuatu stamped its authority as the main challenger to PNG by beating Japan by 228 runs in the most impressive performance at the tournament to date.

Set 251 to win from 50 overs Japan was bowled out for a mere 23 thanks to a sensational opening spell from man of the match Jaxies Samuel who took 6-3 off his 10 overs.

"It was a good result for us today and gives us a real chance of booking a spot on the plane to Ireland," said Vanuatu coach Mark Coles. "However we can't afford to relax now with two huge games to come against Fiji and PNG."

Vanuatu had a number of contributors with the bat and looked to push singles and twos throughout an innings that included only 12 boundries. Ronald Tari top scored with 36 and Patrick Matautaava and Callum Blake both added 35. For Japan Tsuyoshi Takada took 3-55.

However the day belonged to Samuel who along with fellow spinner Jelany Chilia were thrown the new ball in a desperate attempt to get through 20 overs as quickly as possible with rain a possibility. It proved a tactical masterstroke as the pair had Japan 7-6 after 19 overs before Matautaava and Sala came on and cleaned up the tail.