Nepali Ambassador to Kuwait Madhuwan Poudel giving away the man of the match award to Sanjam Regmi after Nepal’s victory over Kuwait in the ACC Trophy Elite Cup league match at the Hubara Grounds in Kuwait on Tuesday. Source: THT

Nepali Ambassador to Kuwait Madhuwan Poudel giving away the man of the match award to Sanjam Regmi after Nepal’s victory over Kuwait in the ACC Trophy Elite Cup league match at the Hubara Grounds in Kuwait on Tuesday. Source: THT

KATHMANDU: Mahesh Chhetri and spinner Sanjam Regmi starred as Nepal eased to an eight-wicket victory over hosts Kuwait in the ACC Trophy Elite Cup Group A match at the Hubara grounds today.
The victory meant Nepal won all their four matches to top Group A and will meet the Group B runners up Malaysia in the semi-finals at the same ground on Wednesday.
Malaysia stunned the pre-tournament favourites the United Arab Emirates (UAE) by two wickets to advance with Group B toppers Afghanistan. Malaysia pipped the UAE on better net run-rate. Afghanistan will meet the Group A runners up Hong Kong also on Wednesday at the Unity grounds.
Opting to bowl first after skipper Paras Khadka won the toss, Nepal bowled out Kuwait for 120 in 42 overs before chasing the total for the loss of two wickets in 26.4 overs.
Nepali openers Mahesh Chhetri (63) and Anil Mandal put on 80 runs for the first wicket to ease their run chase. Khalid Yamin broke their partnership, dismissing Anil for 33 runs. Anil struck three fours in his 51-ball innings.
His dismissal did not affect Mahesh as the wicketkeeper-batsman completed a half century and guided his team closer to the target.
However, Mahesh was caught and bowled by Saud Iqbal to leave Nepal at 111-2, 10 runs shy of the target. Shakti Gauchan (13 not out) and Gyanendra Malla (three not out) completed the formalities. Mahesh struck eight boundaries in his 83-ball knock. It was his second half century in the tournament after hitting 87 against Singapore on Saturday. Anil has also scored two half centuries so far in the tournament — 83 against Singapore and 65 against Hong Kong.
Earlier, the hosts were in dire straits at 48-6 by the 17th over before stubborn middle order batsmen Saif Ullah, Saud Iqbal and Saad Khalid ensured their team reach the three figure mark. Saif struck one six and a four in his 52-ball 21 while Saud top scored with 26 off 48 deliveries to compensate their top order failure. Saad remained unbeaten on 24 off 54 balls.
Offspinner and man-of-the-match Sanjam Regmi claimed 4-26 off nine overs while medium pacer Binod Das took 3-24. Left-arm seamer Mehboob Alam also grabbed two and skipper Paras pocketed one wicket.