Circle Abandons Shisr-1 Well Due to Drilling Difficulties

Middle East and North Africa-focused junior energy firm Circle Oil reported Wednesday that it will plug and abandon its Shisr-1 well on Block 49, onshore southern Oman, due to drilling difficulties.

Circle explained that the drilling equipment's bottom-hole assembly (BHA) became stuck below the 9.625-inch casing shoe that had been set at 2,687 feet. Several attempts were made to remove the BHA but these proved unsuccessful. Drilling information, confirmed by the company's independent drilling advisor, suggests that the main problem zone is immediately below the casing shoe and that any further attempts to deepen or side track the borehole are inadvisable.

The well reached a depth of 5,413 feet before encountering problems; its target had been the Hasirah sands that had been estimated to lie at a depth of 6,200 feet. No hydrocarbons were found. Circle said that the drilling difficulties have not been encountered to the same extent in previous wells in the area.

Oman's Ministry of Oil and Gas has given its approval to plug and abandon the well.

Circle Chairman Steve Jenkins commented in a company statement:

"This well was always deemed as high risk and the unexpected and disappointing conditions experienced in this well, designed as a slim-hole stratigraphic test, have been a challenge to our drilling team."

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