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Nepal lose first Twenty20 by 18 runs

Nepal lost their first Twenty20 International match against the Netherlands by 18 runs at the VRA Cricket Grounds in Amstelveen on Tuesday.

Netherlands, who now lead the four-match series 1-0, made 134-5 in 20 overs with Avinash Karn restricting the hosts to a below par total returning with 0-8 from four overs. Nepal had only skipper Paras Khadka and Gyanendra Malla to cheer for the runs before they could only manage 116-7 in 20 overs.

It was Nepal’s third loss in their five Twenty20 Internationals having lost to Hong Kong and Bangladesh in the previous occasions. Nepal have victories against Hong Kong and Afghanistan — both in the 2014 ICC World Twenty20 in Bangladesh.

The second Twenty20 International is schedule for Wednesday. Nepal had a bright start in the game when Karan KC’s first over and team’s second saw the visitors picking up two wickets — Michael Swart (four) and Ben Cooper (duck) — that reduced the hosts to 16-2. Another run out of Wesley Barresi read the scores 32-3 after four overs.

After opener Stephan Myburgh and skipper Peter Borren (15) launched a brief resistance, Netherlands managed to consolidate the innings. But two quick wickets from Basanta Regmi of Borren and Peter Seelar (six) reduced the Netherlands to 71-5 in 11.5 overs.

However, Myburgh stuck to the crease at the other end and together with Michael Rippon stitched an unbeaten 63-run partnership for the sixth wicket that ultimately turned the tide towards the hosts. Myburgh made his career best 67 in Twenty20 Internationals hitting six boundaries and a six. Rippon was a calm ally making a run-a-ball 25 in his boundary-less innings.

Avinash was the most impressive among the Nepal innings but remained wicketless. Basanta took 2-34 from four overs and Karan had the figures of 1-32. Sompal Kami was hit for 30 runs in his four wicketless overs with Paras conceding 21 in his four.

Coach Pubudu Dassanayake tried a new opening pair of Subash Khakurel and Gyanendra but the former departed early in the game for two runs. Binod Bhandari was in at No. 3 and went for five runs. Gyanendra was next to go for 24 off 22 in an innings that included four boundaries.

While Paras remained at the crease, he saw Rajesh Pulami Magar (13), Sharad Vesawkar (10), Pradeep Airee (six) and Karan (one) keep losing wickets. Nepal didn’t have a notable partnership that would have pulled them back in the game.

Paras was unbeaten on 45 off 42 with a six and a four. Ahsan Malik was the pick of the Dutch bowlers with 3-23 from four overs and Timm van der Gugten took 2-23 from his four.


Nepal VS Netherlands 1st T20 I

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