National cricket team to go to Hong Kong today

Kathmandu, October 9

Nepali national cricket team is on Tuesday leaving for Hong Kong to play the sixth round matches of the ICC World Cricket League Championship against the hosts at the Tin Kwong Road Recreation Ground in Mong Hok on October 13 and 15.

The matches against Hong Kong are crucial for Nepal to keep their top four hopes alive in the eight-team competition as top four sides will secure berths in the next year’s ICC World Cup Qualifiers.

Nepal, who have eight points from 10 matches, are sixth in the standing, while Hong Kong are fifth with 11 points. Netherlands (18), Papua New Guinea (16), Scotland (15) and Kenya (12) currently hold top four positions. Bottom two sides, Namibia and United Arab Emirates have already been relegated to the WCL Division-II as both the teams are tied on six points after sixth round matches. After the Hong Kong matches, Nepal will face the United Arab Emirates in the last round.

Meanwhile, national team head coach Jagat Tamatta said the team was ready to face Hong Kong. “Team is ready for the challenges as players have done hard work with the aim of putting their best effort. Since, both the teams have already faced each other on numbers of occasions, both the teams are aware about their strengths and weaknesses. So pressure will be on both sides to win the matches,” said Tamatta at a farewell programme.

Tamatta also hoped that players were confident for the crucial encounter. “They know their responsibilities and hope they will put in their efforts accordingly. Players are well aware that the two matches are important for their cricketing career and they will not let things go from their hands,” he added.

Tamatta said adapting with the local condition was the key. “The team members need to acclimatise with the local condition. Also, the ground that we are going to play in Hong Kong is smaller and we need to take care of that. We will have two days in Hong Kong and the team will prepare it accordingly. We have different plans for different situations,” Tamatta added.

Skipper Paras Khadka said the team had no option to win the matches. “The competition is still open and we have to win the matches. The matches are crucial and that has obviously put pressure. We have worked hard and the team is ready to deliver its best results,” said Khadka.

Meanwhile, National Sports Council Member Secretary Keshab Kumar Bista bade farewell to the team.