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Nepal open India tour with victory

Nepal won their first practice match of the India tour crushing Friends Sports Academy by 121 runs at the Gautam Buddha University Academy in Greater Noida on Tuesday.

Nepal, who are preparing for July 17-25 ICC U-19 World Cup Division 1 Asia Qualifier in Singapore, were playing their first practice match after their previous two games were cancelled due to rain.

And it was former U-16 batsman Pranit Thapa Magar who set the tone for the victory with two crucial partnerships that guided the visitors to 250-7 in 40 overs. The match was reduced by 10 overs due to wet outfield. Friends were shut down for just 129 runs in 32 overs after spinners tightened the screws.

Pranit, who has been looking in a great form since the Dhangadhi Premier League where he played for Sharad Vesawkar’s Biratnagar Kings, made 87 and shared 105 runs for the fourth wicket with Dipendra Singh Airee after Nepal were reduced to 25-3 in 10 overs.

Dipendra made 43 from 50 ball with two fours and two sixes but his departure hardly made any difference as Pranit went on to share another 75 runs for the fifth wicket with Anil Sah.

Anil made 50 off 34 with two fours and three sixes, while Pranit was dismissed for 87 runs in the 37th over after smashing seven fours and three sixes. Rohit Kumar Paudel played a seven-ball cameo of 23 not out with two sixes and two fours taking the team to 250-run mark.

Sonu Gujjar took 3-19 from six overs and Kanisk Bhati had the figures of 2-42 from five overs for the local team.

Gujjar was also the performer with the bat for Friends who were virtually out of the contest at 69-6. But the No 8 batsman kept Nepal waiting scoring 37 from 43 balls with five fours. Boby Yadav was the next best scorer with 24 off 51 hitting two fours.

Shahab Alam (3-13), Rohit (2-8) and Sandeep Lamicchane (2-12) collected seven wickets for Nepal.

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