Lalitpur Patriots win EPL crown

Kathmandu, December 22

Lalitpur Patriots defeated Bhairahawa Gladiators by 14 runs in the final of the TVS Everest Premier League here at the TU Stadium today.

Invited to take the first strike after Gladiators skipper Sharad Vesawkar won the toss, the Patriots were bowled out for 155 runs in 19.1 overs. In reply, the Gladiators managed 141-9.

Patriots made a mediocre start with openers Jaykishan Kolsawala and Gaurav Tomar putting up 41 runs in five overs before Ryan ten Doeschate made a breakthrough for Gladiators. The Netherlands international had Tomar caught by Ravi Inder Singh for 19-ball 23 that included three fours and a six.

Skipper Gyanendra Malla (10) and Pawan Sarraf (five) were dismissed cheaply before Kolsawala and Sandeep Jhora steadied the innings with a 39-run partnership for the fourth wicket to put Patriots in strong position for a big score. At one stage, they were nicely placed at 100-3 with seven overs remaining but the Patriots’ middle and lower order panicked to be all out adding just 55 runs.

Kolsawala top scored with 57 off 52 balls with the help of three each fours and sixes, while Jhora struck a four and two sixes in his 11-ball 24. Kushal Bhurtel, who hit two fours in his seven-ball 11, was the only other batsman to score in double figures.

Krishna Karki was the pick of the Gladiators bowlers taking 3-15, while Mohammad Naveed (2-31) and Ryan ten Doeschate (2-21) shared four wickets between them. Vesawkar, who accounted for his counterpart Malla, took one wicket along with Bhuwan Karki.

In reply, the Gladiators were nicely cruising towards victory before man-of-the-match Lalit Narayan Rajbanshi turned the match around. Gladiators were 104-3 in 15 overs and needed 52 runs from the last five overs with seven wickets in hand but Pawan Sarraf dismissed Ravi Inder Singh in the 16th over and Rajbanshi removed Vesawkar and Ravi Inder Singh in the space of two balls in the next over that jolted the Gladiators.

Opener Pradeep Airee top scored for Gladiators with 22-ball 34 that included four boundaries and a six, while Ravi Inder Singh hit one each four and six in his 32-ball 29. Kushal Malla struck a six to score 16 off eight balls, while Ryan ten Doeschate and Vesawkar contributed 14 each. Aarif Sheikh (12) and Naveed (10) also scored in double figures but they could not convert their knocks into match-winning ones. Rajbanshi returned with the impressive figures of 3-17 from four overs, while Sarraf (2-26) and Yogendra Singh Karki (2-29) shared four wickets between them and the Patriots also affected two run outs.

Champions Patriots received Rs 2.5 million, while Gladiators got one million rupees. Ravi Inder Singh of the Gladiators was declared the player-of-the-series and he got TVS Apache RTR bike. A total of six franchise-based city teams took part in the tournament. Member Secretary of National Sports Council Keshab Kumar Bista handed over the prizes to the winners.