Garamuts off to Japan for World Cup Qualifier

The PNG national men’s U19 Garamuts leave for Japan this Friday in pursuit of a World Cup berth in South Africa in 2020.

They will compete in a five nation tournament against fellow East Asia Pacific nations with the winner earning a place in the U19 50 over World Cup early next year.

Going into the event as favourites, after making eight of the last nine under age World Cups they will play four games in the round robin event against Japan, Samoa, Vanuatu and Fiji.

Their opening game will be on Sunday where they take on Fiji at the Japan Cricket Association headquarters in Sano, three hours out of Tokyo.

Coach and former Barramundi, Kila Pala, has high expectations for this tournament, saying: “The boys have been working hard all year and we hope to emulate the 2018 Garamuts who went through this corresponding tournament undefeated.”

Pala will be assisted on this tour by current Barramundi all-rounder Norman Vanua, who brings a wealth of experience to the group not only in his technical skills but also teaching the Garamuts about competition pressure and managing expectations, especially after his own experiences with the Barras recently.  

Greg Campbell, Cricket PNG CEO, said: “We know the boys will face challenges over there, it is a very different environment but we are confident we have the team to get the job done, that all the hard work on their fitness and technique will pay off and that the Garamuts will get their opportunity to play in a World Cup next year.”

The full squad is:

1)     Barnabas Maha (captain)

2)     Eisa Eka (vice-captain)

3)     Varigini Pokana

4)     Hila Vare

5)     Mavara Hekure

6)     Herea Kilapat

7)     Frank Ani

8)     Guba Seura

9)     Keith Griffin

10)  Noka Aporo

11)  Eddie Tau

12)  Govea Airi

13)  Sema Kamea

14)  Luwelu Sila

Coach: Kila Pala

Assistant Coach: Norman Vanua

Press release