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Dipendra pilots Nepal’s comeback victory

Feb 01, 2019 | CN Staff |

A collective bowling effort and Dipendra Singh Airee’s batting brilliance led Nepal to a four-wicket win over United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Friday to level the three-match Twenty20 International Series at the ICC Academy Oval on Friday.

National cricket team’s new addition Avinash Bohora was among key men with the ball as Nepal bundled out UAE for a below-par 107 in 19.2 overs. Dipendra bailed out Nepal from trouble and scored a gritty 41-ball 47 leading the team to 111-6 with three balls remaining.

Nepal were reeling on 46-5 by the 11th over before Dipendra shared a match-winning 55-run partnership with Pawan Sarraf. Needing seven runs to win from the last over, Nepal lost Sarraf in the first ball to Amir Hayat as tensions kept mounting. But Dipendra eased off the pressure smashing Hayat for a straight six down the ground to the delight of thousands of Nepalese at the Oval.

A cut down the third man in the final ball settled the issue. Dipendra’s innings comprised of a six and four boundaries. Pawan contributed an invaluable 18 from 25 deliveries hitting two fours.

Nepal had a disastrous start when they lost skipper Paras Khadka for a duck in the first over and Pradeep Airee (eight) with just nine runs on the board. Karan KC, in at No 3, played few big shots but the 35-2 soon became 46-5. Nepal lost Karan, Gyanendra Malla (seven) and Sandeep Jora (one) in a space of 11 runs.

Karan made 20 off 23 with two fours and a six. Sultan Ahmed bowled a tight line and took 2-9 from four overs, while Mohammad Naveed, Imran Haider and Zahoor Khan also had one scalp apiece.

Earlier, Sompal Kami gave Nepal a brilliant start with two early breakthroughs. Sompal – who bowled consecutive four overs – returned the figures of 2-15 in his four. Sandeep Lamichhane came in to bowl the sixth over and sent back Shaiman Anwar (14) and Muhammad Usman (duck) to put UAE on backfoot.

Karan then got rid of Mohammad Boota (11) before Abinash joined the act picking up three wickets, UAE scorer CP Rizwan was one of them. Opener Rizwan made 44 off 43 with four boundaries and a six. Abinash, playing his second match for the senior side, returned the figures of 3-20 from four overs.

They will lock horns on Sunday in all-important decider with the series on line.


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