Kathmandu, January 31
Nepal’s Sundeep Jora today became the youngest cricketer to score a half century in Twenty20 International but ended up on the losing side as the United Arab Emirates won the opening match of the series by 21 runs.
Jora achieved the feat at the age of 17 years and 103 days when he scored 53 not out in the first of the three-match series against the UAE at the ICC Academy grounds in Dubai. Despite Jora’s heroics, Nepal could score only 132-7 in 20 overs in reply to UAE’s 153-6.
The International Cricket Council confirmed Jora’s achievement but did not reveal who held the record earlier. “Nepal’s Sundeep Jora became the youngest man to score a T20I fifty at the age of 17 years, 103 days with 53* on debut,” tweeted the global cricket governing body.
Jora, who was playing in his first T20 International match, joined skipper Paras Khadka at the crease after Nepal were reduced to 36-3 inside six overs. The duo added 12 runs for the fourth wicket before Khadka (25) was dismissed. Jora did not get much support from the other end except for Sompal Kami (27) with whom he added 39 runs for the seventh wicket.
Jora struck three boundaries and a six in his unbeaten 53 off just 46 balls. He became the 18th cricketer to score half century on debut, while Australian legend Ricky Ponting holds the record of highest runs — 98 against New Zealand at the Eden Park in 2005 — on debut.
“I am happy that I scored half century on my debut, but sadly our team lost,” Jora told reporters at the ground. “I was not aware of the record when I scored the half century. I came to know about this achievement through media and I am over the moon,” added Jora, who hails from Mahendranagar.
A version of this article appears in print on February 01, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.