NEPAL CRUISE

ACC Trophy Elite 2008
Nepal v Singapore

A 62–run partnership between Paras Khadka and Shakti Gauchan took Nepal to a six-wicket victory over Singapore at the Kinrara Oval. With this victory Nepal are almost certainly in the semi-finals of the ACC Trophy Elite.

Taking first use of the track, Singapore were also up against a team which fielded superbly and allowed their batsmen very little opportunity to be aggressive. Singapore just couldn't get any momentum going at all and with the top-order dismissed within the 13th over the remaining batsmen were as much intent on survival as run-scoring.

Mahaboob Alam bowls Glenn Meyer
Picture: Peter Lim

Nepal kept the pressure on. Danger-man Munish Arora bowled by Paras Khadka for just 4 off 19 deliveries. A partnership between Chaminda Ruwan and Christopher Janik where both batsmen looked comfortable against the Nepali bowlers offered hope to Singapore but a poor call by his captain had Janik run-out by short extra-cover. Ruwan (40) went soon after, and none of the remaining Singapore batsmen able to assert themselves against some quality wicket-to-wicket bowling.

Singapore's captain Chaminda Ruwan
Picture: Peter Lim

Batting wasn't easy all day at Kinrara, the wicket having streaks of green and with cracks which had the ball keeping low whenever it landed on them. Plus there is a distinct slope down towards the Road End starting just on a fullish length, which had deliveries throughout the day shooting straight on.

Janik, run-out
Picture: Peter Lim

"We need to bowl very well plus have some luck" to defend 155, said Singapore's Venkatramana. Singapore's opening bowlers Pramodh Raja and Muhammad Ali bowled two ripping break-backs to claim the wickets of Lohani and Chaugai. Had Singapore's wicket-keeper Vivek Vedagiri accepted Vesawkar's outside-edge Nepal before scoring, the ball running down to the boundary, 155 would have looked far away.

Paras Khadka hits out

Bowl well Singapore did, early on. Raja, Ali and Shoib Razzak moved the ball both ways off the seam early on but once they came out of the attack none of the remaining bowlers threatened Nepal's batsmen. Gyananendra Malla's rush of blood gifted a wicket to Singapore but Khadka (71*) and Gauchan (30*) effortlessly, elegantly, indomitably saw Nepal home.

Group B

Nepal v Singapore at Kinrara Oval
NEPAL WON BY 6 WICKETS
Singapore won the toss and chose to bat
Singapore: 155-9 off 50 overs (C. Suryawanshi 32, C. Ruwan 40; M. Alam 3-25)
Nepal: 156-4 after 40.5 overs (P. Khadka 71*, S. Gauchan 30*)
Man of the Match: Paras Khadka (Nepal)

Scorecard

Filed July 28 2008