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Sharad’s Kings close in on crown

It is the third time that Sharad’s team has reached final of three domestic tournament having led the team to Nepal Premier League (50-over) and Everest Premier League (Twenty20) titles. Challengers will now play the winners of Thursday’s second Qualifier match between Challengers and Paras Khadka’s Team Chauraha.

Electing to bat first, Kings managed to reach 128-9 in 20 overs before Sushil Kandel’s four-wicket haul saw Challengers packed up for just 99 runs in 20 overs. Challengers kept losing wickets at regular intervals and only had two batsmen crossing double figures.

No 8 batsman Bikram Sob top scored with a 16-ball 23 hitting two fours and a six, while Pushpa Thapa made 22 off 24 with three fours and a six.

Sushil picked up a double wicket maiden when Challengers had needed 30 runs from the last over of the innings. The man-of-the-match returned the figures of 4-15 from four overs. Sandeep Lamichhane also took 2-11 from his four.

Earlier, Kings were reduced to 22-2 in the fifth over before Aasif Sheikh and Dipendra Singh Airee (13) got involved in a 39-run partnership. Aasif made 36 off 41 balls with three fours and two sixes, while skipper Sharad was their next best scorer with 24 off 22 with two sixes.

Pawan Sarraf played a six-ball cameo of 15 with two sixes to lift the run rate. Skipper Shakti picked up 3-16 from four overs for Challengers and Dipesh Shrestha had the figures of 2-16 from four overs.

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