Fiji have secured their return to the World Cricket League after a nine wicket win over Samoa today in Lismore, New South Wales.
Fiji captain Joe Rika won the toss at the Oakes Oval, choosing to put Samoa in to bat. It soon proved to be the correct decision, with Samoa finding themselves four wickets down - with only five runs on the board - in the fifth over. They were 21-6 after 10 overs, with Fiji well on top of things.
A 37 run partnership for the seventh wicket between Maletino Maiava and Faasao Mulivai provided a brief respite for Samoa, before Mulivai was caught and bowled by Viliame Manakitoga for 27, becoming the third of four victims for him. Samoa were bowled out for just 73.
Unsurprisingly Fiji had little trouble chasing down their target, with Joe Rika leading the way with an unbeaten 51 from 31 balls. They took just 9.5 overs to complete their nine wicket win.
Fiji will now take part in World Cricket League Division Six, which will take place at a date and venue still to be announced sometime next year, likely between July and September. Already confirmed for the tournament are the Cayman Islands and Guernsey, both relegated from Division 5 this year, and Vanuatu who finished third in the last WCL6 tournament.
The four other ICC regions will also have a team qualifying for the tournament. The Asian qualifier has not been confirmed, but is likely to be Saudi Arabia as the top ranked non-WCL team in the region. Norway and France will play a 50 over match in May to decide the European qualifier.
Africa and the Americas have yet to announce their qualification methods, but will likely choose their top ranked non-WCL teams. For the Americas, this would be the best placed team - other than the Cayman Islands - at this week's Americas Division 2 tournament, whilst for Africa it would be whichever of Ghana and Botswana performs best in their Division One tournament next year.
Fiji originally started in Division Four of the World Cricket League, but three consecutive relegations meant that they found themselves in Division 7 when that was scrapped last year.
Fiji beat Samoa by 9 wickets
Oakes Oval, Lismore, 26 November
Samoa 73 (23.2 overs, V Manakitoga 4-20)
Fiji 74-1 (9.5 overs, J Rika 51*)