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Nepal's Super Six ambitions in danger

Mar 08, 2018 | Cricketingnepal |

Nepal’s hopes of reaching the Super Six of the ICC Cricket World Cup and get the ODI status got dented after they lost to Scotland by four wickets with a below-par batting display in Bulawayo on Thursday.

At the Queen’s Sports Club where Nepal had won hearts by scoring 264 against Zimbabwe while chasing a mammoth 381, the team failed to make any impact with the bat barring skipper Paras Khadka whose half century guided the team to 149 all out in 47.4 overs.

Opening batsman and skipper Kyle Coetzer then played a lone hand as Scotland reached the target in 41.3 overs despite Nepalese spinners doing all they can by taking six Scottish wickets. With Hong Kong knocking out Afghanistan from Super Six contention following their first every victory over a Test nation in ODI cricket, only Nepal and Hong Kong are left with the opportunity to go through from Group ‘B’.

Nepal now must win their remaining two matches against Afghanistan (on Sunday) and Hong Kong to get into the Super Six, provided Zimbabwe beat the latter.  

Nepal had a disastrous start after Stuart Whittingam took three quick wickets of Dilip Nath (four), Dipendra Singh Airee (one) and Sharad Vesawkar (duck) after Gyanendra Malla (one) was bowled by Sufyan Sharif in the second over.

Skipper Paras played with aggression from the other end in his 25-run partnership with Aarif Sheikh (two) and 42 runs for the sixth wicket with Sompal Kami (18) to complete his half century. However, Nepal lost Paras at 100-7. Basanta Regmi (24 not out), Rohit Kumar Paudel (15) and Sandeep Lamichhane (six) wagged the tail to take Nepal close to 150.

Nepali spinners did manage to put Scotland under pressure but Coetzer held the Scotland innings guiding the team to victory with a six off Dipendra Singh Airee. Coetzer struck seven fours and three sixes in his 136-ball 88 not out.

Basanta and Sandeep took two wickets each for Nepal. Dipendra and Lalit Rajbanshi also had a scalp apiece.


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