Province-2 send Karnali packing

Sunsari, January 9

Province-2 defeated Karnali Province by eight wickets in the Group B match of the Manmohan Memorial National One- Day Cricket Tournament here at the Inaruwa grounds today.

Electing to bat first, Karnali were bowled out for 129 runs in 31.5 overs before Province-2 raced to 130-2 with 163 balls to spare. The win meant Province-2 were tied on two points with Nepal Police Club and they will face on Friday in the winners-take-all encounter.

With their second straight loss, Karnali were eliminated from the three-team pool.

Karnali made a mediocre start with openers Rabindra Shahi and Bipin Rawal putting up 41 runs inside eight overs.

They lost two wickets in the space of one run and came under pressure after losing the third wicket nine runs later to be 51-3. Wicketkeeper Rawal was the first to go for 10 runs, while Bijay Bist (one) and Tek Magar (five) fell cheaply.

Shahi and Prakash Jaishi added 39 runs for the fourth wicket but another collapse saw Province-2 losing last seven wickets for 39 runs. Skipper Shahi top scored with 46 off 68 balls, while Diwan Pun contributed 23 runs and Jaishi added 15. Province-2 skipper Mehboob Alam took 3-11 from 4.5 overs, while Hari Shankar Shah and Aadil Ansari grabbed two wickets each.

In reply, Province-2 lost openers Sudhir Chaudhary (two) and Hari Shankar Shah (five) with just 12 runs on the board before Hasim Ansari and Suraj Patel took the team home without further loss. They added 118 runs for the unbroken third wicket partnership. Manof-the-match Ansari struck 11 boundaries and a six in his 73- ball 80 not out, while Patel remained unbeaten on 33 off 50 balls that included one each four and six. Anuj Chunara and Dinesh Adhikari took one wicket each for Karnali.