Fiji and Samoa are one win away from a return to the World Cricket League after they won their play off semi-finals against Japan and the Philippines in Lismore, New South Wales, today.
Fiji lost the toss in their match against Japan, with Japanese captain Masaomi Kobayasha choosing to bat first. Prashant Kale top scored for Japan with 46, but only two other batsmen were able to reach double figures as Japan were bowled out for 103. Jikoi Kida was the pick of the Fijian bowlers with 5-21.
Fiji lost opener Seru Tupou early on in their reply, but Joe Rika and James Smith put on an unbroken 102 as Fiji completed a nine wicket win. Rika was the top scorer with 63.
Samoa batted first after winning the toss in their match against the Philippines. Their innings was dominated by a unbeaten 133 from opener Fred Sapatu, who helped his team post 247 before they were bowled out. Syed Ali was the leading bowler with 4-36.
In reply, the Philippines soon found themselves in trouble at 23-5 after 11 overs. A knock of 40 from Himanshu Ahuja gave their total some respectability, but they were still unable to get close. Daniel Burgess took 3-13 as the Philippines were bowled out for 101, losing by 146 runs.
Fiji and Samoa will now play off tomorrow for a place in Division Six of the World Cricket League.
Fiji beat Japan by 9 wickets
Oakes Oval, Lismore, 25 November
Japan 103 (40.3 overs, P Kale 46, J Kida 5-21, R Khan 3-13)
Fiji 104-1 (19 overs, J Rika 63*)
Samoa beat Philippines by 146 runs
Gloria Mortimer Oval, Lismore, 25 November
Samoa 247 (44.5 overs, F Sapatu 133*, S Ali 4-36, R Thakur 3-41)
Philippines 101 (30.4 overs, H Ahuja 40, D Burgess 3-13)