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Sublime Aarif gives NPC six-wicket victory

Jun 05, 2018 | Parbati Lama |

Aarif Sheikh continued his sublime form leading Nepal Police Club (NPC) to a six-wicket victory over Province 3 in the Prime Minister Cup One Day National cricket tournament at the Mulpani Cricket Ground on Tuesday.

A delayed start saw the match reduced to 20 overs each and Province 3 made what could have been a challenging 137-9. Aarif perfectly shaped NPC chase lifting his team from 25-3 to 138-4 in 19.5 overs.

Tuesday’s result means the Group ‘B’ is tied between three teams with NPC leading the table on net run rate. They have five points along with Province 5 and Province 7 who are third in the table. NPC and Province 5 meet on Wednesday that will decide the two teams to reach the last four.

While Province 7 have played all their fourth matches, only a big margin losses for either teams on Wednesday can put them in the semi-finals. But with a negative net run rate, even a big defeat might not suffice for Province 7.

NPC were reeling after they lost Dilip Nath, Dipendra Singh Airee and Kushal Bhurtel (nine) cheaply. Aarif went on to share a match-winning 110-run partnership for the fourth wicket with opener Sunil Dhamala before falling in the final over. But by that time, the match was already within NPC grasp. Man-of-the-match Aarif made 66 off 54 balls with six boundaries and two sixes.

Sunil was unbeaten on 50 off 46 hitting three sixes and two boundaries. Rupesh Srivastav took 2-32 for Province 3.

Earlier, Province 3 were reduced to 41-5 in 9.3 overs before Aadil Khan and Sonu Tamang revived the innings with a 61-run partnership for the sixth wicket. Aadil made 45 off 43 with three sixes and a four. Sonu was out for 48 off 33 hitting three fours and two sixes.

Ramnaresh Giri took 3-25 and Lalit Singh Bhandari had the figures of 2-25 from their collective eight overs.


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