Nepal U-19 beat HPCA

Kathmandu, January 5

Nepal U-19 team registered a three-wicket victory over Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) in their second practice match on Tuesday.

In the match played at the Dharamshala Cricket Stadium, Nepal invited HPCA to bat first and bowled them out for 170 runs in 36.3 overs. In reply, Nepal raced to 171-7 in 38.3 overs. The match was reduced to 40 overs due to wet outfield.

Aarif Sheikh gave Nepal an early break through when he trapped Nitin Sharma leg before the wicket for a duck. After an early shock, HPCA bounced back with Digbijay Singh and Arsalan Khan adding 57 runs for the second wicket.

Sandeep Lamichhane dismissed Khan for 31 off 35 balls. HPCA were reduced to 98-7 by the 23rd over as they lost six wickets for 26 runs. Ritwiz Kashyap and Ayush Janwal added 64 runs for the eighth wicket. Digbijay Singh top scored for HPCA with 51 off 46 balls, while Ayush Janwal made 47 off 41 balls. For Nepal, Prem Tamang and Aarif Sheikh claimed three wickets each, while Sandeep Lamichhane took two wickets.

In reply, Nepal had a disastrous start as they lost opener Sandeep Sunar (three) in the second over. Nepal then lost Ishan Pandey (five) to be 25-2 in the eighth over. Sunil Dhamala and Yogender Singh Karki then added 34 runs for the third wicket. Dhamala scored 30 off 45 balls with three fours and a six.

Karki combined with skipper Raju Rijal to add 37 runs for the fourth wicket. Karki was dismissed for 29 off 55 balls. Rijal then shared a 54-run partnership for the fifth wicket with Aarif Sheikh to take the team close to victory. Rijal struck two fours in 54 balls 45, while Sheikh remained unbeaten on 35 off 39 balls that included four fours.

Ayush Janwal claimed three wickets for HPCA, while Ankush Kumar took two and Shivam Puri grabbed one. Nepal U-19 will play another friendly match on Friday.