Region No 3 (Kathmandu) got off to a shaky start in their opening Group ‘A’ match of the Wai Wai U-19 National Cricket Tournament edging Region No 7 (Janakpur) by 33 runs on Thursday.
At the Sainik Awasiya Mahavidhyalaya grounds, Kathmandu were sent packing for just 142 in 37.5 overs after Kundan Singh destroyed the middle and tail order. Janakpur kept losing wickets at regular intervals after Ashish Pokhrel picked up five wickets in his splendid nine-over spell.
Kathmandu lost opener Sumit Maharjan (two) early before Ashish Dhami consolidated their innings with two crucial partnerships. He shared 54 runs for the second wicket with Bishal Babu Adhikari and 40 with Rajesh Rimal (16).
Bishal made 27 off 38 with three fours and his dismissal was followed by the departure of Ashish who made 37 off 58 with three hits to the fence. Rajesh shared another 24 with Arjun Adhikari but his run out sparked a terrible collapse with Kundan doing rest of the job.
Kundan took five out of the remaining six Kathmandu wickets after affecting the run out. Arjun made 20 off 44 with one boundary. Sushant Mandal, Divanshu Malik and Chandan Jha also picked up one wicket each.
Aviraj Yadav took the first two Janakpur wickets to ball before opener Pravash Jha and Ansaj Upadhyaya led a brief fight with a 30 run partnership. Ashish then opened the floodgates getting rid of Pravash and Ankit Mandal (duck) in his two consecutive overs.
Pravash made 19 off 46 with three fours. Jitendra Singh soon removed Murari Thakur for a duck before another 35-run stand between Ansaj and Ansarul Rain took Janakpur close to triple figures. The partnership finally came to an end when Ansaj handed a return catch to Bishal after making 26 off 66 that included two fours.
Ashish then picked up the next three wickets beginning with the scalp of Ansarul who made 24 from 47 deliveries hitting three boundaries. Man-of-the-match Ashish returned with 5-5 from 9 overs keeping five maiden. Aviraj took 3-23 from 5.4 overs. Janakpur scorecard read five ducks.