Asian Games 2010 - Report Day 9: HONG KONG v NEPAL

  • About to get underway in Guangzhou with Hong Kong v Nepal in Group D, which also has the Maldives. The winner of this group play seeded Afghanistan on Wednesday and thus are in a with a great chance of a medal.
  • Cloudy afternoon in Guangzhou today. Hong Kong have won the toss and will bat.
  • Both teams evenly matched, Hong Kong with just a bit more explosiveness and thus volatility against Nepal's pedigree and solid talent - it is impossible to call! Should be a great contest
  • Nepal follow out Umpires Sarika Prasad and V Kalidas, Hong Kong's openers Najeeb Amar LHB and Roy Lamsam RHB behind them.
  • Najeeb to take strike from Amrit Bhattarai LFM from the Pavilion End
  • And it's first blood to Nepal! Najeeb going the wildest of heaves and has off-stump knocked back playing way too soon. Hong Kong 0 for 1 after 0.2 overs
  • Najeeb through with the shot even before the ball had hit the stumps. The ever-increasing Jamie Atkinson RHB is in
  • Amrit getting some movement in the air and off the surface, end of a good over. Hong Kong 1-1 after 1
  • The veteran Bonod Kumar Das on from the Press Box End
  • It might be the tight shirts but it looks like all the Nepali bowlers have bulked up a bit
  • Jamie Atkinson is beaten by a beauty from Binod then tries to hit him over the top, doesn't get hold of it, gets 2 though. Tries to repeat the stroke next ball and is caught at mid-off. Out for 2 off 8 and feeling tied down a little too early it seems. Hong Kong 4 for 2 in the second over.
  • Binod ends the over with a beauty, climbs off a length onto the flinching shoulder of Roy Lamsam's bat and flies over slip for 4. Hong Kong looking shaky against a Nepal team that have their serious game faces on.
  • First authentic boundary to Hong Kong by Roy Lamsam in the third over, survives an lbw shout by Amrit next ball (pitched outside leg) and Hong Kong are 15 for 2 after 3 overs.
  • Both teams protagonists have a huge history of contests between them, know each others games well.
  • Gyanendra Malla saves the first of his around 10 runs per innings diving full length at mid-off to check a lamsam drive, Hong Kong end the fourth over on 17 for 2.
  • Boundary from Roy Lamsam, pull through midwicket to end the 5th over and Hong Kong are 22 for 2. Lamsam 14* off 16, Irfan Amed 2* off 3
  • The ground was close to full early on in the day - emptying rapidly as China subsided to Malaysia! - filling up again with around 1000+ including I see Jawaid Iqbal and Sher Lama from Hong Kong. Plenty of Nepali support too, as ever
  • Binod puts one in the slot for Irfan who drives him over the top for his first 4 and repeats the stroke, this time even better executed, for a two-bounce for. Paras reinforces the leg-side field then decides against it. Hong Kong 31 for 2 half-way through the 6th over
  • The game is fiercely competitive
  • Basant Regmi SLA on in place of Amrit Bhattarai from the Pavilion End
  • Hong Kong 36 for 2 after overs, scoring at a fair clip. Will want 120 to be competitive
  • Mahaboob Alam LFM to get his first skiddy bowl of the day from the Press Box End
  • Malla takes a top catch, running sideways and back 10 yards, eyes on the ball all the way to take a catch inches off the ground, diving three-quarter length. THE MAN IS A STAR. Irfan out for 14, Nepal will be glad to see the back of him. Mahaboob's first, Hong Kong 37 for 3 after 7.2 overs
  • Ilyas Gull, the new man for Hong Kong
  • Rahul Vishvakarma SLA on from the Pavilion End.
  • Hong Kong 45 for 3 after 9 overs, Roy Lamsam 19* off 30 Ilyas Gull 4* off 4
  • Ilyas Gull run out by a foot after some great work by Rahul Vishvakarma at mid-on, swoop-pickup-throw-direct hit to have the diving Ilyas out by a foot. Hong Kong 47 of 4 in the 10th over. Waqas Barkat RHB the new man.
  • Bit of inswing for Mahaboob to the right-handers.
  • Nepal are bowling well enough to please even Roy Dias
  • Hong Kong 54 for 4 after 11, Roy Lamsam still there on 23*
  • Last night in the wee small hours had a masterclass from Javed Miandad in how to score runs - "take 4 singles an over, here and there (especially behind square on the leg side) and know that you can score a 4 any time, any ball that is right to hit. When you need 40 to win off the last 5 overs, as long as you have wickets in hand you can do it with one big over." He makes it sound so simple.
  • You know what? It probably actually is.
  • Hong Kong 57 for 4 after 12 overs
  • Scoreboard ticking along, Hong Kong 61 for 4 after 13 overs
  • Young Waqas Barkat looks a good player, plays late, bat and pad close together. Will be looking to open out soon. Hong Kong aiming for 100+ now, 120 looks too far away against this attack.
  • Mahaboob Alam ends his spell, 4-0-13-1. Has done well. Has put on a half-yard of pace at least over the course of the year.
  • Roy Lamsam's keeping things going for Hong Kong, finding the gaps, but they and he do want boundaries. Which Waqas gets with a super stroke over cover off SLA Rahul V. Goes on the ground for the next one and against anyone other than Malla would have had more than a single. Hong Kong 76 for 4 after 15.
  • Paras Khadka - another one who looks bulkier since I saw him last - come on from the Pavilion End. Chants of 'Paras' from the stands
  • The sly Waqas goes down on one knee to paddle him round to fine leg for 4, first ball of Paras's over. Roy Lamsam, charging a short one, gets a top-edge down to fine third man. 13 off the over in all, good one for Hong Kong.
  • Hong Kong 89 for 4 after 16, Lamsam 33* off 52, Waqas 199* off 23. 120 looking on again
  • The cunning Waqas reverse sweeps Basant for 4 down to the Nepal fans. Who don't cheer
  • Waqas dropped in the deep, eminently takeable, off Basant. He moves on to 29, Hong Kong 96 for 4 after 17 overs
  • Roy Lamsam looks like the kind of player one could get out any time, only one can't. He gets a stack of runs in so many situations. A goodhand from him as he tickles and paddles Amrit Bhattarai down to leg a couple of times. Hong Kong 102 for 5 after 18 overs
  • Partnership of 55* so far at a run a ball between Lamsam and Barkat.
  • Lamsam slams a 6 to long on off Basant Regmi and with one over to go, Hong Kong are 113 for 4.
  • Three wickets in the last over, that man Malla involved in two of them with a direct it to run out Roy Lamsam for 47 off 61 and a catch at mid-off to dismiss Nadeem Ahmed for 1 off 3 and Hong Kong finish on 115 for 7. Good come back by Nepal. That +/- 8 runs could make a world of difference.
  • Amrit Bhattarai took 3-16 for Nepal, bowled well, as all the opening bowlers did. Waqas Barkat made 31 to add to Roy Lamsam's 47 for Hong Kong, their fifth wicket partnership of 66, a significant one.
  • Hong Kong's former captain Tabarak Dar in the audience too we see. A couple of minutes to the start of the Nepal run-chase of 116, so here's something to fill your time
  • Irfan Ahmed RFM strikes with his sixth ball, Binod Bhandari caught behind, cutting and Nepal are 3 for 1 after 1 over.
  • Gyanendra Malla RHB to face young Aizaz Khan RFM next
  • The light is closing in, Nepali winter sky almost
  • Giant TV screen and LED scoreboard glowing brightly through the gloom
  • College boy Aizaz, younger, less muscly and less 'ferocious' looking than Irfan Ahmed, is yet a good yard quicker than the older man at times
  • Required run-rate just over 6 an over for the next 18 overs
  • Nepal 9 for 1 after 3 overs. Not much to report! It's gritty stuff.
  • WICKET Aizaz and Anil Mandal (5 off 11) give us all something to do, as Anil drives on the up without getting on top of it, caught at cover. Paras Khadka is in. Nepal 9 for 2 in the fourth over
  • Aizaz beats Paras with a lifter on off-stump. Paras drops his hands and is safe
  • This is building up into a good match. Crowd at the ground behind their teams, as we spot Dominique McCusker from the Hong KOng's women's team in the stands
  • Either one of Paras or Gyanendra are going to have to get Nepal up to the 116 they need. There are some hitters to follow them, as well as the classy Sharad Vesawkar but if these two at the crease leave the others with too much to do, Nepal are really going to struggle
  • Five overs gone and Nepal are 15 for 2. 101 off 15 wanted at a little under 7 an over. Getting into Javed Miandad territory..something more from what my illustrious flat mate told me last night...
  • ‎"If you're two runs per over behind after 10 overs, you're only 20 behind. That is one good over from you."
  • Paras takes advantage of the free hit following an Aizaz no ball and slams nepal's first boundary over cover. Nepal 25 for 2 after 6 overs.
  • Niaz Ali LFM replaces Irfan Ahmed from the Pavilion End. Atkinson standing up to him.
  • WICKET Niaz strikes! Malla skews a leg-side hit and is out for 8 off 16. Nepal 26 for 3 off 6.2 overs. Need 90 off 88 balls. Sharad Vesawkar in.
  • Roy Lamsam to come on. Nepal need 90 off 84 balls, seven wickets in hand.
  • Najeeb holding the spinners back, trusting to medium pace in this light
  • And it's Waqas behind the stumps, not Jamie Atkinson. Apologies
  • Nepal 30 for 3 after 8 overs. Need 86 off 72 balls. Winnable by both at stage but it looks like 55/45 to Hong Kong at the moment.
  • It looks like Sharad and Paras are going to keep the ball on the ground while looking for the gaps for a while.
  • Nepal 37 for 3 after 9 overs. 79 off 66 wanted.
  • After 10 overs, Nepal are 42 for 3. Hong Kong's bowers not giving Paras and Sharad any room at all to swing their arms. Hong Kong were 47 for 4 at this stage in their innings so there's still not much in it.
  • Hong Kong's captain that old fox Najeeb Amar brings himself on. Nepal want a partnership. First ball of the over is swept by Sharad for 4
  • Najeeb SLA going through his repertoire of darts and sliders, floaters and scooters that over. All but the first dropping on off and middle, from over the wicket.
  • WICKET Pressure does for Paras, by the width of the crease as he calls Sharad through after a push to point. Niaz throws, Waqas breaks the wicket with Paras's bat on the line whereas it has to be over it for him to be in. He's out for 13 off 20 and Nepal are 47 for 4 after 11, chasing 116
  • Comparing Hong Kong to Nepal, Nepal are really only an over behind at this stage. Stiil in it
  • Nadeem Ahmed SLA, the most classical of Hong Kong's spinners, finding turn straightaway in his first over
  • WICKET Nadeem strikes. Mahaboob Alam goes, caught at deep backward square for 0, struck the nudge too well., Atkinson catching. 48 for 5 now.
  • Eight overs to go and Nepal need 68 at 8.50. It is still so possible. Hong Kong going for wickets too. Sharad the key for Nepal, currently 14*. But needs to accelerate.
  • Nepal on 50 for 5 after 13 overs. Need 66 off 42 at just under 9.5 an over
  • WICKET. The Ahmed's strike. Sharad goes fpor the big one and Irfan catches Sharad head high ar long on. Would have been a 6 if he wasn't there or was a dwarf
  • But he's 6 foot 3
  • Nadeem knows he got away with that one, and Hong Kong can feel they're running away with the match. Still, we have seen some extraordinary innings in international cricket recently with games all but lost, this game is no less international and these two sides are no less evenly matched.
  • Nepal need 66 off the last 6 overs
  • Basant Regmi's in and he's pulled things out of the fire for Nepal many a time. Can he do it again?
  • Possibly, he iust hits the biggest six of the tournament sofar off Najeeb Amar, the ball bouncing off the seats and with 5 overs to go, Nepal are exactly halfway to their target.
  • It's almost two runs a ball from now on.
  • Two in the deep at long-on and midwicket for Basant everytime
  • Four overs to go, Nepal need 52, four wickets in hand. Hong Kong haven't started smiling in any way at all yet. Much on Basant Regmi.
  • Illyas Gull that old artificer on from the Pavilion End
  • Basant three dots so far off Ilyas
  • Until..he's missed at deep midwicket and the ball goes for 4
  • Irfan buckets the next one though, and the Illyas dead-man stare worked. Basant out for 15 off 17
  • Nepal 68 for 7 in the 17th, looking for a miracle or at least fireworks from Binod Das the new batsman
  • He starts with a boundary and with three overs to go, Nepal are on 72, 44 wanted.
  • Maldives cricketers are in the house - watching their opponents in this group. Sri Lanka wrre watching earlier
  • The winner of this group (HK, Mald, Nep)plays Afghanistan on Wednesday for a semi-final spot
  • Irfan can laugh now, even though catches are being dropped off his bowling. Waqas stumps Binod Das by one that turned to off, Nepal 76 for 8 in the 18th.
  • And Godiva Li has been spotted in the audience. Great player for Hong Kong women who was on this turf last week with her team
  • Irfan Ahmed in any light's hard to play, in this gloaming, he must be close to unplayable. He's through the batsmen every delivery but he's also wide of the stumps.
  • Last over, Nepal need 33. Something incredible happened in the Hong Kong SIxes two weeks ago's not going to happen here is it?
  • Najeeb Amar to bowl
  • No, it's not. Just one run from his first three
  • Last ball's a wicket and Hong Kong have won by 30. Nepal one partnership and quite a few boundaries short of their opponents.

Roy Lamsam and Waqas Barkat on winning ugly and being effective
A philosophical Paras Khadka in Guangzhou

Asian Games 2010

Group D: Hong Kong v Nepal
Hong Kong won the toss and chose to bat
Hong Kong: 115 for 7 off 20 overs (R.Lamsam 47, W.Barqat 31; A.Bhattarai 3-16)
Nepal: 85 for 8 off 20 overs (N.Ahmed 3-12)

Tournament page

Filed November 21st, 2010