Defending champions The Team NEPAL cruised to the semi-final
Posted by Prabin the सोभित on सोमवार, अप्रील 27, 2009
The Himalayan Times, KATHMANDU,
Defending champions Nepal cruised to the semi-finals of the ACC U-19 Elite Cup with a game to spare after the three-wicket win over Singapore at the Hubara grounds in Kuwait on Saturday. The four-time defending champions overcame the 172-run target in the 45th over to register their third consecutive victory. In their previous matches, Nepal defeated Saudi Arabi and Malaysia.
Electing to bat first, Singapore were dismissed for 171 in the penultimate ball in the 50th over. Rezza Gaznavi top scored for Singapore with a patient 39 off 67 balls that included three fours and a six. Irfan Madakia also contributed 30 from 43 balls. Tomthy Singhan, Pren Dadlami (16), Prasheen Param (15), Satyavrat Rao (11) and Abhijit Shukla (11 not out) also chipped in valuable runs for Singapore.
Rom Shrestha was the pick of the Nepali bowlers with 3-29 from 10 overs while Sagar Khadka took 2-24 from 10 overs. Amrit Bhattarai (1-30), Chandra Saud (1-28), Lal Bahadur Adhikari (1-35) and Prithu Banskota (1-9) also bagged one wicket apiece.
Nepal had a disastrous start losing Sunny Pun (two) in the first over and Antim Thapa (four) was run out at 30-2 by the 10th over. But a stand of 46 runs between Anil Mandal and skipper Gyanendra Malla brough the defending champions back into the game. Malla, who was also instrument in their win over Malaysia on Thursday, again helped his team’s run chase with a stroke filled 62 runs. Malla struck eight boundaries in his 63-ball knock. Anil Mandal also contributed 36 off 54 balls including four hits to the fence. Known for his explosive batting, Rom Shrestha played a subdued innings making unbeaten 16 from 39 balls. Sagar Khadka (15 not out) and Prithu Banskota (13) as chipped in valuable runs as Nepal overcame the target in 44.5 overs. Rom was adjudged man of the match for his allround performance.
Abhijit Singh was the pick of the Singapore bowlers with 3-22. Satyavrat Rao also claimed two and Abhiji Shukla bagged one wicket for Sigapore. Nepal’s Sri Lankan coach Roy Luke Dais said that the game was too close. “Our guys lost wickets in regular intervals and invited unwanted pressure for themselves,” said Dias adding that his side was lacking a quality spinner.
Malla also believed that they threw untimely wickets and invited pressure. “We also conveded a bit more runs due to our sloppy fielding,” said the Nepali skipper showing concerns that his players are not taking the responsibility seriously. Nepal will play their last Group ‘A’ match against Hong Kong at Hubara grounds on Monday.
In addition, The Kathmandu Post says:
Earlier, Nepal had problems aplenty with bowling as two main spinners Lal Bdr. Adhikari and Sagar Khadka were down with flu. According to team manager Sailesh Kumar Chaudhary, the coach and the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) officials are looking at the option of getting players from back home to replace the unfit ones.
” The match was too close for comfort,” coach Roy Dias said, ” as we lost wickets as regular interval and gave away too many runs due to lapse in fielding.”