HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: Jagdish Chand put an all round performance as Nepal crushed old foes Singapore by 101 runs to enter the final of the ACC U-16 Elite Cup at the Bayuemas Oval in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia today.
Singapore was a team that defeated Nepal on their home ground in the final of the 2010 edition but it was different story today when a quality Nepali side squeezed them dry.
Nepal will now take on hosts Malaysia — whom they edged in their final Group ‘B’ match by one wicket — in the title match on Sunday at the Kinrara Oval.
Opting to bat first after winning the toss, Nepali batsmen bounced back from their poor showing against Malaysia in the last match of the group stage to make 240-9 in 40 overs with half centuries from Jagdish and opener Nurdhoj Sen. Singapore, in reply, failed to build on to a solid start as their innings folded at 139 in 39.5 overs.
Singapore openers Archit Goenka and Vaikunth Seshadri gave early headache to Nepali bowlers with some sensible cricket adding 81 runs in 16.2 overs. However, once Nurdhoj ran Archit out, Singapore lost their momentum losing 10 wickets for just 58 runs.
Vaikunth — also a victim of Nurdhoj run out — top scored in Singapore innings with 47 runs from 72 balls including three fours and a six. Archit made a 51-ball 39 with four boundaries. After the dismissal of two set openers, Akash Bista destroyed Singapore middle order picking up three wickets, while Dipendra Chand and Rupesh Bastola had one scalp each.
Jagdish then polished off the tail taking 3-28 in 6.5 overs. Simar Miglani was the only other Singapore batsman to resist Nepali bowling with 14 not out.
Earlier, Nurdhoj gave Nepal a blistering start adding 40 runs for the first wicket with skipper Dipendra Chand in just 3.3 overs. Dipendra made a nine-ball 20 with two boundaries and a six. Nurdhoj added another 42 with Aashif Sheikh (15) and went on to score 51 runs in 60 balls. He hit nine boundaries.
Adil Khan (21 off 42) and Alfaz Mansuri (18) then contributed some runs before Jagdish began his onslaught. Jagdish — who struck a 25-ball 51 against Iran — hammered 53 in 24 balls to take Nepal beyond 200 runs. Man-of-the-match Jagdish hit six boundaries and three sixes.
Rupesh also made runs down the order with an 18-ball 21 striking three fours while Kalicharan Yadav hit a four and a six in his six-ball cameo that produced 14 runs. Archit, Kaishik Illango and Abhinav picked up two wickets each for Singapore.
In a low scoring second semi-final match, Malaysia defeated Oman by 36 runs. Malaysia were all out for 78 in 31.3 overs but did remarkably well to send Oman packing at 42 in 20.1 overs in the match where not a single batsman reached double figures.