Former U-19 left arm seamer Avinash Karn is set to make debut with the national team when Nepal take on their archrivals Afghanistan in the the ACC Emerging Teams Cup Group ‘A’ opening match at the Singapore Cricket Club grounds on Saturday.
Avinash, who took 24 wickets including a hat-trick against Bahrain during the ACC U-19 Elite in Malaysia earlier this year won his place in absence of regular seamer Amrti Bhattarai.
“Avinash will lead the attack,” Dassanayake told www.cricketingnepal.com on Friday. Coach Pubudu Dassanayake put his faith in the young seamer following his impressive performance in the national team’s 15-day Sri Lanka tour ahead of the Emerging Teams Cup where Nepal played four practice matches against Sri Lankan U-23 side.
“Avinash, Sagar (Pun) and Ramnaresh (Giri) have proved that they can perform at this level,” Dassanayake had told the website after Nepal completed their tour after being whitewashed by the mighty Sri Lankans.
Avinash is the only bowler in the domestic cricket to pick up all 10 wickets in an innings. He reached the milestone playing for his region Birgunj against Region No 6 Baitadi during the U-19 National Cricke Tournament.
Coach Dassanayake had chosen Avinash, another Ramnaresh and spinner Sagar ahead of experienced Amrit and right arm offie Sanjam Regmi. The coach is planning to prepare a huge pool of cricketers before Nepal begin their gruelling international schedule with the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifiers in November a the UAE.
Anil, Subash to open
National team regular openers Anil Mandal and Subash Khakurel will lead the batting attack against Afghanistan. Dassanayake has often flirted with the opening order in the past and if the opening duo don’t bring much fruit, he can still go with options. Pradeep Airee is another option for the coach to open the innings.
Gyanendra Malla will come at his regular No 3 spot followed by skipper Paras Khadka. Paras — who has headed to Singapore with his long injury trouble shoulder — will only bat. Sharad Vesawkar, Binod Bhandari, Basanta Regmi, Shakti Gauchan will retain their place along with Prithu Baskota, while Dassanayake is yet to decide on playing either Sagar or Rahul Kumar BK along with seamer Chandra Saud.
Dassanayake said he will decide on including an extra spinner or extra fast bowler after looking at the morning conditions.