Khadka misses out on century by a run

Kathmandu, September 26

Skipper Paras Khadka missed out the century by just a run as Vishal Warriors defeated Sagarmatha Legends by 25 runs in the Wai Wai Everest Premier League here at the Tribhuvan University Stadium today.

Khadka scored a quick fire 45-ball 99 to guide his team to 174-4 in 20 overs. The national team skipper Khadka smashed two fours and 10 sixes in his entertaining innings. Suraj Prasad Kurmi remained not out on 30 off 40 balls that included a four and a six. The Warriors then restricted the Legends to 149-5 despite Sunil Dhamala’s solid half century.

Warriors made a mediocre start after Khadka elected to bat first. Openers Paresh Lohani (nine) and Sagar Pun (13) were dismissed cheaply. Khadka then stole the show as he struck fours and sixes all over the park and shared a 131-run partnership with Kurmi for the third wicket to anchor Warriors’ innings. Player-of-the-match Khadka was one run short for first century of the tournament. He was caught by Rahul Vishwakarma in the boundary line while trying to hit another maximum off Rupesh Shrivastav in the last ball of the 18th over. Manjeet Shrestha scored 13 off 10. Shrivastav took two wickets for the Legends, while Bikram Sob and Mehboob Alam claimed a wicket each.

In reply, the Legends were well short of the target despite opener Sunil Dhamala’s 60-ball 87. Legends made a horrible chase as opener Sandeep Sunar was caught by Manjeet Shrestha off Sushan Bhari in the second over with only six runs on the board. However, Dhamala and Anil Kumar Mandal brought the team to track with a 67-run partnership for the second wicket. Dhamala struck six fours and five sixes in his innings, while Mandal scored 24-ball 15.

Sagar Pun dealt to blow to the Legends when he dismissed Dhamala in the 19th over and Alam alone could do nothing except for reducing the defeat margin. Alam hit two fours and two sixes in his unbeaten 27 off just 13 balls. Bhari took two wickets, while Dipesh Khatri and Pun claimed a wicket each for Warriors.

In another match, Panchakanya Tez defeated Colors X-Factors by 34 runs for their second win in a row. Batting first, Tez scored 154-3 in 20 overs before restricting X-Factors to 120-8. Aasif Sheikh top scored for Tez with 60-ball 67 that included five boundaries and two sixes, while skipper Sharad Vesawkar slammed two fours and a six in his 39-ball knock.

Openers Sheikh and Sanjay Shrestha (24 off 17) put on 51 runs in seven overs before Sanjam Regmi bowled the latter. The second wicket partnership of 83 runs between Sheikh and Vesawkar helped the team reach to a mammoth total. Avinash Karna, Amar Singh Rautela and Sanjam Regmi pocketed a wicket each for X-Factors.

Karan KC and Vesawkar claimed three wickets each to check runs in X-Factors’ reply. Siddhanta Lohani top scored with 28 off 25 balls that included a six, while opener Hari Shankar Shah added 25 off 30 balls with the help of two fours. Yogendra Singh Karki (21) and skipper Gyanendra Malla (20) also scored in double digits. Karan KC and Vesawkar both conceded 22 runs in their four-over spells, while Sushil Kandel and Dipendra Singh Airee took a wicket each.

The results meant Tez are at the top of the six-team standing with four points, while Kantipur Gurkhas and Vishal Warriors have three each from two matches. Jagdamba Rhinos, X-Factors and Legends are yet to open their accounts.