Nepal fail to qualify for ICC Under-19 World CupNepal’s bid to secure a berth in the ICC U-19 World Cup for the eighth time agonisingly failed on Thursday despite winning four of their five matches in the Asia Qualifier in Kuala Lumpur.
Nepal’s bid to secure a berth in the ICC U-19 World Cup for the eighth time agonisingly failed on Thursday despite winning four of their five matches in the Asia Qualifier in Kuala Lumpur.
For Nepal to qualify, they needed to beat Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to lose against Oman in the final round matches on Thursday. While Nepal did manage to win, but so did the UAE. UAE beat Oman by 10 wickets for their fifth win in as many matches to qualify for the U-19 World Cup slated for January and February next year in South Africa. The UAE join Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, England, India, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, the West Indies and Zimbabwe in the tournament proper.
Nepal were dominant throughout the Qualifier winning all four matches convincingly but their unfortunate one-run loss to the UAE in the rain-affected match on April 13 sealed their fate. Had not rain intervened, Nepal were in comfortable position to beat the UAE having set 248-run target. The UAE were 122-3 in 30 overs when rain washed out the match. The Duckworth-Lewis calculation saw the UAE win the match by one run.
Apart from the UAE match, Nepal beat Singapore by 217 runs, Malaysia by eight wickets, Oman by 15- runs and finally on Thursday Kuwait by eight wickets. The Asia Qualifier allowed just the table-topper a berth in the U-19 World Cup.
At the Kinrara Academy Oval grounds on Thursday, Kuwait were bowled out for 157 in 49.4 overs and Nepal raced to victory scoring 160-2 in just 28 overs. But their yet another convincing victory ended up just as a footnote to the UAE qualification.
Kuwait’s total was built around a solid knock of No 4 batsman Noman Budroo, who was the last man out at 70. Budroo saw wickets fall at the other end but the batsman himself stood firm to help his team post a respectably total on the board. Budroo slammed eight boundaries in his 120-ball stay in the pitch.
Opener Gokul Kumar also chipped in a painstaking 36 off 66 balls. Hamoud Amanullah (17) and Meet Bhavsar (10) were the only other Kuwaiti batsmen to score in double figures. Nepal showcased their depth employing eight bowlers against Kuwait. Skipper Rohit Kumar Paudel was pick of the Nepali bowlers with figures of 3-13 from three overs. Kushal Malla, Surya Tamang and Rashid Khan also took two wickets each.
In reply openers Rit Gautam and Pawan Sarraf literally killed off the match as a contest putting on 93 runs for the first wicket. Sarraf was first to go, dismissed by Abdul Sadiq in the 20th over having scoring 53 off 61 balls with eight fours and a six. Man-of-the-match Gautam added another 47 runs for the second wicket with Aasif Sheikh but was trapped leg before wicket by Hamoud Amanullah in the 27th over.
Gautam clobbered seven boundaries in his 84-ball 62. Sheikh and Sundeep Jora (5) then carried their team to the finishing line. Sheikh remained unbeaten on 33, his 20-ball cameo included five fours and a six.
Nepal 160-2 in 28 overs (R Gautam 62, P Sarraf 53, A Sheikh 33*; H Amanullah 1-25, A Sadiq 1-17) beat Kuwait 175 in 49.4 overs (N Budroo 70, G Kumar 36; RK Paudel 3-13, K Malla 2-21, S Tamang 2-27, R Khan 2-16) by eight wickets Man-of-the-match: R Gautam