2006 ACC U-15 Cup (Elite Division) - MALAYSIA v NEPAL

Nepal, winning the toss in overcast conditions elected to place the home team on the batting crease and it seemed to work well as Malaysia were off to a very shaky start losing their first wicket for only 7 runs in the fifth over.

Nepalese pace

The Malaysian batsmen never really settled into a rhythm losing wickets at regular intervals. The Nepalese opening bowler Krishna Karki (4 – 24 in 12.3 overs) was a constant threat. Pradeep Aidee and Rochak Bhatta each bagged 3 wickets with figures of 3 – 17 in 11 overs and 3 – 34 in 12 overs respectively. It was dour batting against a disciplined Nepali attack.

As the match moved into the afternoon, dark clouds gradually appeared eventually bringing a heavy downpour later on. Syazrul Ezat Idrus proved himself to be the top Malaysian batsman, holding the Malaysian batting together with a solid 62 off 80 balls. With not a single boundary, he patiently knocked about getting the crucial runs to lift Malaysia to a better position before having his bails clipped off by the impressive Karki.

Fall of the last Malaysian wicket

Malaysians were 134 all out after 52.3 overs.

From the Malaysian innings it was clear that the pitch obviously worked wonders for the pace bowlers and it was no surprise when Muhammad Daros demolished whatever hope Nepal had of putting up a decent score themselves. Daros captured four wickets for just 18 runs in 19 overs.

His first victim was Sagar Pun who constantly had trouble playing the bowler. With the ball moving quickly on the bounce Pun only managed a thick edge as wicket-keeper Norazmi took the easiest of catches. Wickets seemed to fall too soon too fast for the Nepalese and during the tea break they stood at a very weak 3 – 2 in 4 overs.

Talking out the strategy

Although the bowling of the Malaysians was spot on, their tight fielding was yet another reason for the restriction of the runs. Idrus took an outstanding catch at silly mid – off diving far to his left to get the wicket of Shantosh Bhatt. Idrus was carried off for a short period of time to be treated on the boundary but soon returned to the action.

Accurate bowling and committed fielding put the Nepalese on the back foot throughout the innings and at the end of it they only managed 50 in 54.5 overs.

The second innings once again saw Karki impose himself on the Malaysians with figures of 3 – 22 in 11 overs. The Malaysian batsmen were able to stay at the crease for a considerable amount of time but the runs came too slowly for the team. The psychological initiative was wrested back by Nepal as their batting debacle was tempered by a confidence-building performance in the field. Malaysia declared at 94 – 8. A target of 179 was never feasible for Nepal but the question was whether three hours would be enough for Malaysia to bowl them out.

Nepal’s 52 for 5 in the 46 overs of their second innings was a minor triumph in the circumstances and Malaysia will be ruing a chance to grab maximum points against their plucky opponents, for whom with the exception of captain Prithu Banskota, this was their first ever competitive match.

Malaysia v Nepal at Kelab Aman
Nepal won the toss and elected to field
Malaysia: 134 all out off 52.3 overs (S. Idrus 62; K. Karki 4-24) and 94 for 8 off 33.5 overs
Nepal: 50 all out off 54.5 overs (F. Daros 4-18) and 52 for 5 off 46 overs
Points: Malaysia – 12; Nepal - 9
Man of the Match: Syazrul Idrus (Malaysia)

Filed May 29 2006