Paras earns applaus for his leadership

AJMAN: Allrounder Paras Khadka felt a great honour to have earned the opportunity to lead the national side for the first time during the recently concluded ACC Twenty20 Cup in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and said he was ready take the responsibility in the days to come.

"It's an honour to lead the national team and if kept faith in me I will do my best to lead the team to glory," said Paras, who replaced Binod Das for the ACC Twenty20 Cup. Nepal failed to advance beyond the group stage for the second successive time in the shortest version of the game. Nepal also suffered first-ever defeats in any level and form of the game against Malaysia and Oman.

Nepal's failure in the tournament owes much to the misfiring star batsmen. The skipper accepted that the batsmen let the team down. "I am not an exception. I should have inspired the team with a good knock, but I failed to do so," added Paras. Asked about the experience of leading the team, the allrounder said the responsibility was not a new thing for him. "I have done it several times in age-group tournaments and I have led the senior side during domestic tournaments," said Paras.

Despite the failure in the tournament, Paras drew priase from his team members and coaches alike with the way the skipper acted in adverse situations. Assistant coach Manjur Khan said that he was a good captain and is capable to lead the team. "He has a lot of potential but needs to concentrate in his individual performance. That will inspire other players to perform," he said.

Former skipper Binod Das said Paras handled everything well. "He is in a learning process and maturity will come with time and experience," said Das, who was the skipper of the national team since 2004. "As a vice-captain he has learnt how to tackle in a difficult situation. But since this was his first tour as a captain and we can not expect big results straight away," added Das. "The best part is that he consulted with the senior players before implemention any tactics," said the former skipper.

Senior member of the team and former skipper Paresh Lohani was all praise of Paras. "He is innovative and does not wait things to happen, he tries to make it happen," said Lohani, who led the national team in 2004 in the three-day match against Hong Kong. "He is very positive. As a captain, I don't see any weakness in him. He is capable of leading the national side in form of the game as he has a very good cricketing sense," said Paresh.