Province 1, Sudurpaschim win opening matches in U-19 cricketGandaki lose by 21 runs. Sudurpaschim defeat Karnali by 5 wickets.
Province 1 launched their U-19 National Cricket Tournament with a 21-run win over Gandaki Province after Dipesh Kandel starred with both the ball and the bat at the Mulpani cricket ground on Thursday.
Opener Sonu Ansari top scored for Province 1 smashing 64 runs off 94 balls but after their top order failed captain Kandel partnered with Ansari with his 75-ball 36 to lift the innings and guide his team to 183 total.
Kandel then returned 3-21 in his 10-over spell that also featured three maiden overs, helping Province 1 restrict Gandaki to 162.
Gandaki’s bowlers Shishir Bhusal (4-28) and Nirtesh Giri (3-24) combined first to wreak havoc on the Province 1 batting line up, with Bhusal striking first when he had Ansari’s opening partner Suvan Gahatraj for 12.
Giri then sent back Estain Rijal for a nought and Bhupal Dangal for 7 to put Province 1 in trouble at 51-3.
But the captain held his nerve and put on a 63-run stand with Ansari to steady the ship before Giri removed Ansari, caught by Shrestha.
Faijal Rahaman then impressed with a 41-ball 26 to keep up the progress but Subash Bhandari hit back hard next with two consecutive wickets—trapping Rahaman and Nikhil Yadav in front.
Bhusal then polished off the tail to limit Province 1 to a low total.
Gandaki were looking for a first victory after losing their opener to Bagmati by 74 runs but faltered in the run chase instead.
Opener Sohail Kunwar departed cheaply for 9, caught by wicket keeper Gahatraj off Kandel.
Arjun Kumal—Wednesday’s stand-out batter and sole fighter who fell just two runs shy of a maiden century—was out for 22, with Aswin Mahato (3-32) claiming the prized wicket when he had Kumal caught by Nikhil Yadav.
Aswin next removed Cibrin Shrestha for 5 as Province 1 were reeling at 56-3.
Dipak Dumre added 25 and Karan Pangeni hit 48 to stage a fight back but Aswin and Kandel removed both in the space of five balls to ensure Gandaki fail to make further progress.
Captain Bhandari made 18 before falling victim to Kandel and Bipin Mahato made sure of the victory with the wickets of Sujan Gautam (1) and Sudip Aryal (5).
At the TU cricket ground, Milan Bohara’s all-round performance helped Sudurpaschim Province defeat Karnali by 5 wickets.
After sending Karnali to bat first, Milan Bohara took 3-21 to restrict the opponents to a low total of 127.
Dinesh Adhikari top scored for Karnali with an unbeaten 35 that came off 32 balls. Opener Suwash Ayer made 30 facing 35 deliveries.
Naren Saud also picked two wickets.
In reply, Milan smashed 42 off 47 balls that featured seven fours and one six to guide Sudurpaschim to 128-5 in just 26.2 overs after openers Deepak Bohara (20) and Bishal Ayer (9), and captain Anurag Singh failed to make any significant contributions.
Dipak Bohara, another batter who came at number 5, made 20 to help the cause.
Karnali’s Anuj Chanara took three wickets giving away 42 runs in his 10-over spell.
Province 1 will lock horns with Bagmati and Sudurpaschim will meet Lumbini Province on Friday.