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Basanta pulls off a thriller against Namibia

Feb 08, 2018 | Cricketingnepal |
Basanta Regmi sparked at the right time as Nepal defeated Namibia by one wicket in an entertaining contest at the Affies Park, Windhoek on Thursday

After leg spinner Sandeep Lamichhane took four wickets and Sompal Kami had three scalps, Nepal bundled out the hosts for just 138 in 34.2 overs. Nepal were virtually out of contest at 56-6 before a brief resistance from Sharad Vesawkar and Rohit Kumar Paudel raised some hopes. 

However both batsmen fell in a space of 11 runs as Nepal pegged pack. Sompal Kami and Basanta kept Nepal in the game with 17 runs and once the former was dismissed the team required 16 runs from the last two overs. On a track that looked difficult to bat on, Basanta pulled out Nepal from the jaws of defeat to guide his side to 139-9 in 49.2 overs. 

Basanta hit Namibian skipper Sarel Burger for a six in the penultimate over in which Nepal collected nine runs. In the last over bowled by Jan Frynlinck, Basanta once again reminded why he has been dubbed the 'crisis man' of Nepali cricket taking a couple and hitting a boundary of the first two balls before a wide put Nepal across the finishing line.

Basanta remained unbeaten with a precious run-a-ball 24 hitting two fours and the only six of the game for Nepal. 

Nepal had a poor start after they lost opener Dilip Nath (duck) with the team yet to score. Skipper Paras Khadka and Gyanendra Malla (15) shared 32 runs for the second wicket before Nepal went on to lose next five wickets for just 24 runs. Paras was first to go for 19 off 35 with two boundaries. 

Soon followed Aarif Sheikh (duck), Gyanendra, Dipendra Singh Airee (six) and Karan KC (three). From a precarious position, Sharad and Rohit shared 33 runs for the seventh wicket as Nepal approached triple figures. 

Sharad top scored for Nepal with 29 off 67 with three hits to the fence. In his debut match for the Nepali national team, Rohit scored 17 from 60 with two fours. Sompal chipped in 13 off 29 with a boundary. 

Bernard Scholtz returned the best figures of 4-11 from nine overs and Craig Williams took 3-32 from 10. Burger hadn't taken wickets but was impressive conceding just six runs in nine overs until Basanta fetched nine runs from him in his 10th. 

Earlier, Sompal had given Nepal early breakthroughs removing both the Namibian openers before some lusty hittings from Williams consolidated the innings. But Williams lost his wicket to Sandeep after making 41 off 34 with eight boundaries. Namibia were 81-6 at one stage but a lower middle resistance took them to what could have been a winning total.

Zane Green and Frylinch made 22 runs each for Namibia with both hitting three boundaries apiece. Man-of-the-match Sandeep took 4-18 from 8.2 overs and Sompal returned the figures of 3-35 from four. Basanta, Paras and Sharad also took a wicket each for Nepal.


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