A day after picking up four wickets, Abhishek Jha capped a sensational day with an all round display handing Region No 7 (Janakpur) their second consecutive victory in the Wai Wai Under-19 National Cricket Tournament on Saturday.
Region No 9 (Mahendranagar), meanwhile, marked their age group debut with a victory defeating Region No 5 (Nepalgunj) by three wickets in the other match of the day at the Pulchowk Engineering College grounds.
Abhishek’s all round performance was the highlight of the day as he rescued Janakpur from a batting collapse and took six wickets in the team’s 13-run victory over Region No 4 (Bhairahawa).
Janakpur were 141 all out in 47.2 overs before man-of-the-match Abhishek returned with 6-24 from 9.2 overs that folded Bhairahawa innings for just 128 in 33.2 overs. Bhairahawa were 48-3 in 15 overs but Bijay Sunar and Prakash KC resisted with a 43-run stand for the fourth wicket.
After Bijay lost his wicket to Abhishek, Bhairahawa lost their last seven wickets for just 37 runs. Rahul Pratap Singh and Gopal Singh also delivered for Janakpur picking up two wickets each.
Bijay made 24 of 59 with two boundaries and Prakash made 23 off 31 with three fours. Nurdhoj Sen scored 22 off 50 that included three hits to the fence.
Earlier, Hari Shankar Shah and Sanjeet Pandey (four) gave Janakpur a mediocre start adding 25 runs in 6.2 overs before two quick wickets from Devendra Somare jolted them. Hari was one of Devendra’s victims leaving the crease after a 20 off 19 that included four boundaries.
Skipper Rahul Pratap Singh (16) and Chandan Jha (15) resisted for a while adding 27 runs for the fifth wicket and left Janakpur at 74-6 in 26.2 overs. Abhishek then added 29 runs for the seventh wicket with Sameer Nepal (12) before losing his wicket as the last Janakpur batsmen to go.
Abhishek made 42 off 75 with six fours and the only six of the day. Rupesh Bastola took three wickets, while Dipendra Yadav (2-29), Susan Bhari (2-30) and Devendra (2-45) shared six wickets between them for Bhairahawa.
Newly recognised region Mahendranagar had struggle in the recently held senior national tournament but under Bhuwan Karki they had a bright start after squeezing out Nepalgunj for 144 in 37.3 overs before reaching 147-7 in 38 overs.
Following some early wobble, Sunil Dahal defied Nepalgunj attack with a 34-run partnership for the third wicket with Tekndra Mal (13). Sunil top scored for Mahendranagar with a 74-ball 38 hitting six boundaries.
The scores read 100-6 in no time until Raju Rijal and Dipendra Airee laid the foundation for the victory with a 37-run stand. Raju struck five boundaries in his 32 off 50 and Dipendra was 17 not out. Siddhant Shahi returned with the figures of 3-20 and Aakash Bista took 2-24 for Nepalgunj.
Earlier, man-of-the-match Lalit Bhandari took three top order wickets leaving Nepalgunj tottering at 55-5 in 16.3 overs. Bhupendra Thapa and Amar Singh Rautela then saved the blushes with a 73-run stand.
Amar Singh made a 40-ball 44 with nine boundaries and Bhupendra Thapa made 39 off 73 balls that included three fours. Nepalgunj batsmen took no time to surrender after both batsmen fell in a space of 10 runs.
Prajwal Shahi (21) was the other batsman to make runs in double digits. Dipendra also starred with the ball picking up three wickets.