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Kushal in, Kushal out: Nepal announce final squad for World Cup Qualifiers

Kushal Malla was the major casualty as Nepal announced squad for the ICC Twenty20 World Cup Qualifiers in Oman on Tuesday.

Left arm spinner Shahab Alam and opening batsman Pradeep Airee also faced the axe while another left arm orthodox spinner Sagar Dhakal made the cut despite heading to Oman as a back-up bowler.

All three players who made the exit had featured in only one match each of the recently concluded Twenty20 Quadrangular Series in Oman. Kushal Bhurtel, who showed up only in the match against Ireland and made 15 runs, was also included.

While Kushal Malla looked poor with his body language against Ireland, Kushal Bhurtel played with intent. Pradeep had struggled to get runs against Oman, the only casualty for Nepal in the Series.

Sandeep Lamichhane will lead the Nepali squad that includes two veterans Gyanendra Malla and Sharad Vesawkar, while Gulshan Jha has been included in place of injured Karan KC who will now miss a major tournament for Nepal.

Other members in the team included Aarif Sheikh, Aasif Sheikh, Kamal Singh Airee, Dipendra Singh Airee, Abinash Bohora, Jitendra Mukhiya, Lokesh Bam and Bibek Yadav.

Nepal will kick off their campaign with the match against Oman on Friday. The pool also consists of Philippines and Canada. Nepal must make it to the final to qualify for World Cup.

The top two teams from each group will make it to the semi-finals. The other group consists of Ireland, UAE, Germany and Bahrain. Nepal had also played against Oman and the UAE in the Quadrangular Series. Nepal defeated Oman but lost to UAE and Ireland.

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