SCOTLAND extended their winning run to five matches at the World Cup Qualifier in New Zealand, comfortably overcoming Papua New Guinea by 52 runs.
If winning is truly a habit, the only thing the Scots need to do is make sure they do not kick the habit tomorrow night against Kenya, in a match where victory will ensure that Scotland will make their third World Cup appearance in the spring of 2015.
The United Arab Emirates take on Namibia and victory will also secure their berth in the finals – the top two nations will meet in a final on Saturday to finalise the groupings – but the winner of the Hong Kong-Papua New Guinea match could still qualify if either of the top two slips up.
Preston Mommsen has overseen three convincing wins as stand-in for injured captain Kyle Coetzer, and he was the man of the match with 94 off 105 balls against PNG in Lincoln after Scotland won the toss and posted 288 for nine. Opener Matty Cross got the ball rolling with 49 and Freddie Coleman fell one run shy of that score.
PNG, whose improvement is in part thanks to the experience of former England wicketkeeper Geraint Jones, were never up with the required run rate and Jones was run out for 12 by a throw from Richie Berrington. Rob Taylor and Majid Haq took three wickets apiece as the Scots kept their opponents at arm’s length.
Co-coach Craig Wright said: “It was another hard-earned victory. We batted well as a unit with Preston providing the backbone to allow us to set up a good total. We have said all along that we want to keep imposing ourselves on each match and bring a consistent performance. We have done that well over the past five games and the challenge is to do that against Kenya.”