World Cup calling?

Pratik Ghimire

Pratik Ghimire

World Cup calling?

Nepal reached the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Qualifiers after defeating the UAE by nine runs. The game was decided by Duckworth-Lewis (DL) method as the second innings had to be reduced to 44 overs due to bad light. 

Nepal scored 269 runs by losing six wickets in their final match of the triangular series of the World Cup League 2 played at the TU cricket ground on Thursday. 

For Nepal, Kushal Bhurtel played a half-century of 50 runs in 35 balls with three fours and four sixes. Similarly, Bhim Sarki got out after playing a magnificent knock of 67 runs in 76 balls with nine fours while Aarif Sheikh made 52 runs off 62 balls with two fours.

Gulshan Jha remained unbeaten on 50 runs while Dipendra Singh Airee scored not out 10 runs.

Junaid Siddiqui took the most wickets (three) for UAE,  while Ayan Khan and Zahoor Khan got two and one, respectively.

UAE decided to bat first after winning the toss and made a total of 310 runs by losing six wickets. Asif Khan, who came to the crease at number six for UAE, scored an aggressive century with four fours and 11 sixes in 41 balls and remained not out. Vriitya Aravind, who shared 135 runs partnership with Khan for the sixth wicket, played an innings of 94 runs off 138 balls with eight fours and two sixes.

UAE skipper Muhammad Wasim returned to the pavilion after making 63 runs off 49 balls with two fours and six sixes. 

For Nepal, Airee bowled economically by giving 19 runs in eight overs. He took two wickets with two maidens. On their part, Lalit Rajvanshi, Sompal Kami and Sandeep Lamichhane took one wicket each.

With this win, Nepal climbed to the third position of the league and has secured a place in the global qualifiers for the World Cup that will kick off in Zimbabwe on June 18. Scotland have already become League 2 champions while Oman have finished second. Both teams will join Nepal in the global qualifier. 

It will feature ten teams in total, the bottom five teams from the World Cup Super League, the top three teams from the World Cup League 2, and the top two teams from the 2023 World Cup Qualifier Play-off. 

It is certain that Nepal will play against Zimbabwe, the Netherlands, Oman and Scotland in the qualifier, while the remaining five teams are yet to be decided. Top two teams from Zimbabwe qualifiers will play the ICC World Cup that is set to take place in India, in October 2023.

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