KATHMANDU: Nepal’s influential middle order batsman Sharad Vesawkar is leaving for England on Thursday to play friendly series from Mumbai’s Jaya Shree Cricket Club.
Sharad will be playing 10 friendly matches against the local cricket clubs of England during his 20-day stay from July 18 to August 5.
The right handed batsman said it could be a gateway for him to play professional cricket in England. “Though this is only a friendly tour, it would be a perfect opportunity for me to display my skills and put some impression on the clubs there,” Sharad said.
Sharad said Jaya Shree picked him up for the England tour following his performance with the club early in the year where he played four Twenty20 matches in a local tournament in Mumbai.
Sharad had scored unbeaten 30 and 40 runs in two matches, apart from proving himself as a good part time bowler. “It is a good opportunity the club has provided me and the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) and my club — Nepal Armed Police Force Club — helped me a lot in this regard,” said Sharad. The club has partially sponsored his trip providing the accomodation expenses, while he will be bearing the ticket expenses on his own.
Sharad is one of the few Nepali cricketers to play cricket in England. In a similar situation, Shakti Gauchan first played friendly matches for an Indian club and later represented Sileby Town Cricket Club winning nine caps and scoring 312 runs in seven matches at an average of 62.40 that included unbeaten 118 against Woolsthorpe and a half century. Shakti also took nine wickets for Sileby with 2-6 being his best figures.
Sharad had struck a fine century (105 not out) against Fiji in the ICC World Cricket League Division-V Tournament on home soil in February last year, which Nepal won by defeating the United States of America in the final. Before breaking into the national team in 2004, he played in different age groups starting from Under-15.