Kathmandu set dates with Baitadi

Kathmandu, November 13:

Ujjwol Thapa and Rochak Bhatta claimed four wickets each to guide Region No 3 (Kathmandu)to a comprehensive eight-wicket victory over Region No 5 (Nepalgunj) and a place in the final of the Boost U-17 National Cricket Tournament today.

In an another match between the already-eliminated teams, Region No 1 (Biratnagar) beat Region No 4 (Bhairahawa) by 46 runs.

Kathmandu’s win secured them a place in Saturday’s final against Region No 6 (Baitadi), who advanced to their first major final at any level. Both Kathmandu and Baitadi won four of their five league matches but the former topped the standing on better run rates.

At the Pulchowk Engineering Campus grounds, Nepalgunj were bowled out for 117 runs in 31 overs and Kathmandu surpassed the total for the loss of two wickets in 25 overs. Nepalgunj were cruising along nicely at 91-3 in the 22 overs but lost their last seven wickets for just 26 runs, thanks mainly to man of the match Ujjwol and Rochak.

Bidhan Giri top scored with 47 from 68 balls that included six fours. Skipper Subendu Pandey contributed 14 and Rupesh Sharma 13 runs. Ujjwol finished with 4-9 from seven overs while Rochak took 4-26.

In reply, Kathmandu openers Ayush Rana and Bijay Gautam laid the foundation for an easy win with a 44-run stand. Bijay hit five fours in his 26-ball 28 while Ayush made 32 off 54 balls including three hits to the fence.

Ayush also put on further 45-run second wicket partnership with Pawan Shrestha, who scored unbeaten 23. Kathmandu skipper Prithu Baskota remained not out on nine runs. Pratik Singh (2-33) took both the Kathmandu wickets to fall.

At Tribhuvan University Stadium, Biratnagar were dismissed for 135 runs in 37 overs after opting to take the first strike. Bhairahawa could muster just 89 runs in 33.2 overs. Biratnagar had a dream start with openers Somesh Yadav (30) and Aditya Shrestha (25) putting on 63 runs.

Niraj Chhetri scored 20 off 25 balls with two sixes. Man of the match, Amandeep Singh completed a five-wicket haul taking 5-29 for Bhairahawa. Hemanta Acharya took three and Nirmal Thapa bagged one wicket.

For Bhairahawa, Krishna Karki top scored with 65-ball 19 while Hemanta Acharya made 16. The only other Bhairahawa batsman to score in double figures was opener Nischal Chaudhary (13).

Shree Prasad Sahani, Deepak Sharma, Nirjal Chhetri and skipper Kundan Singh took two wickets apiece for Biratnagar.