One of the biggest things that has stung national team skipper Paras Khadka is the poor infrastructure in Nepali cricket. “It has been pretty long period since we started playing cricket. There should have been stadiums, equipments with updated technologies but nothing has happened,” Paras had said one sunny morning at the TU Stadium.
Nepali cricketers and fans have seen how cash has been wasted in a never-ending Mulpani Stadium project for the last six years and Paras wanted to relate with the country’s situation not only in cricket.
“I don’t know where is Mulpani ground and I have never been there. I have been hearing about it for a long time but don’t know how it looks. I would like to relate it’s state to the country’s plight. There is no one to take the responsibilty here and work in a proper way,” Paras might have been making mockery of Mulpani as the project itself has done to cricket.
Times have changed. Nepali cricket now has taken a giant stride towards the World Cup and with 50-over Qualifiers looming, the fortunes could scale a new heights provided we get at least a one-day status through New Zealand Qualifiers. A place in the 2015 one-day World Cup will be a jackpot for us.
Playing under limited resouces, or even a zilch is suitable, Nepali cricketers returned to heroes welcome after qualifying for the World Twenty20 at the TIA on December 1. Sharad Vesawkar — who starred for Nepal during the tournament invovling in three sensational finishes — told reporters: “To develop Nepali cricket two or three stadiums are required.” The victory rally of the Nepali team reverbrated with the fans’ repeated demand of stadiums as their team is in World Cup. And what else commitments have been flown afterwards.
A recent cabinet meeting no doubt has given cricket a disinct place in Nepali sports as it ordered the Youth and Sports Ministry to come with a plan in the infrastructure development of cricket apart from the assurance of providing a perfect preparation for Nepal’s future tournaments.
Yubaraj Lama, the Memeber Secretary of the National Sports Council, contry’s sports governing body, appeased the cricket fans saying the tender for Mulpani Stadium has already been issure and once it gets finalised, the construction process will begin.
Government Chief Secretary has also given the assurance of working together with Ministry, NSC and CAN in the infrastructure development of cricket. This is just the momentum that cricket have waited for a long time — a recognition from the government.
However, cricket fraternity other than the CAN officials has been tested for long by the unfinished Mulpani project. Until and unless the planned job are accomplished, nothing can be anticipated because sports is one of the part of the state that has always been hit hard by political instability.
The cricket governing body is already moving ahead to propose stadiums in Mulpani, Pokhara and Bhairahawa. Asian Cricket Council Development Officer is a big lover of Nepali cricket and considering the topography and the huge turn out during international matches, he has often said that Nepal could be one of the best neutral venues for cricket.
The national cricket team has been running at a speed of 180km/h by their performance and even a performance speeed of 100 kmph from the concerned authorities with the help of government can script a bright future for Nepali cricket. Doubts, however, will remain.Can we get three stadiums??
Note :- This ariel view of Mulpani Cricket staduim which is going under construction was taken by Anil Ghimire.