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Rajesh scores half century as Nepal XI on front foot

Rajesh Pulami Magar’s patient half century and a burst of opening spell from seamer Karan KC helped Nepal gain an edge over MCC on the first day of their two-day match at the TU Stadium on Saturday.

After MCC decided to field firt, Nepal XI declared their innings at 228-8 having batted for 39.5 overs. KC then wreaked havoc with three quick wickets as MCC were 72-5 at stumps.

Skipper Neil Dexter was fighting a lonely battle when stumps were called, batting on 21 not out off 31 balls with four boundaries. Shakti Gauchan also picked up two wickets for Nepal XI.

Earlier, Subash Khakurel and Naresh Budhayer gave a 66-run opening wicket stand before Dexter triggered a collapse with the dismissal of the former. Subash made 33 off 57 with six boundaries.

The score soon read 84-5 after Nepal XI lost Pradeep Airee (four), Dilip Nath (zero), Shakti (five) and Naresh who scored 32 off 87 with six fours.

Rajesh then stepped in an together with Dipendra Airee shared an 88-run sixth wicket partnership to help the team reach 200-run mark. Rajesh made 60 off 103 with 10 fours. Dipendra made 33 off 71 with five fours.

Dexter and Richard Wilkinson picked up three wickets each for the visitors. Karan batted with some power making 28 off 38 hitting three fours and a six. The first innings for both sides is 70 overs.

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