Kathmandu- Nepal’ll be looking to settle down batting issues before they return home when they take Scotland in the second match of the ICC WCL Championship at New Cambusdoon Ground, Ayr on Friday. The match starts at 10:45, local time i.e 3:30 PM NST.
Anil Mandal, making his comeback in the team, batted magnificently in his 100 runs off 93 balls (first hundred for a Nepal batsman in List A) to bring Nepal close to win the first match. Though Nepal lost the match by three runs, there were few positives regarding Nepal’s batting. Skipepr, Paras Khadka scored 77 runs, openers gave a good start with opening partnership worth 44 runs, and more importantly, Nepal scored 232/5 runs in 36 overs.
Bowling looked good until the 22nd over, however, once captain Preston Mommsen started his onslaught, both the spinners, and pacers looked hopeless. Only, few things needed to be addressed in the bowling, and that is how to control runs in the death overs. Bringing in Jitendra Mukhiya would be a smart move, as Karan KC hasn’t been among the wicket takers lately.
Dropping Subash Khakurel, and Binod Bhandari payed for Nepal. If the team management shall drop out Rajesh Pulami, and bring in Prithu Baskota, who has been in England for some time playing club cricket, it’ll definitely help the team’s cause. Also, impressive youngster, Siddhant Lohani can get a place in the squad in place of Pradeep Airee.
Probable XI- Paras Khadka (C), Mahesh Chettri (WK), Anil Mandal, Gyanendra Malla, Sharad Veswakar, Prithu Baskota, Basant Regmi, Shakti Gauchan, Siddhant Lohani, Sompal Kami, and Jitendra Mukhiya.
Confident Scotland fielded a likely weak team against Nepal in the first match as several key players including Rob Taylor, Josh Davey, Calum McLeod, Freddie Coleman, and Matt Machan missed out from the squad due to county duties. Nepal’s performance in the first match has certainly given the Scottish management some goosebumps.
Had the partnership between Mommsen, and de Lange worth of 113 runs in just 12 over not come for the sixth wicket, the results would have been different. Still, it was a fine performance from both the bowlers, and batsmen for Scotland, and they’ll only seek for another two points when they take Nepal tomorrow.
Probable XI- Preston Mommsen (captain), Richie Berrington, Kyle Coetzer, Matthew Cross (wk), Safyaan Sharif, Alasdair Evans, Hamish Gardiner, Michael Leask, Gavin Main, George Munsey, and Con de Lange.
Head to Head
Scotand 2 Nepal 0
Scotland thrashed Nepal by 90 runs in the ICC World Cup Qualifiers 2014 in New Zealand, tournament which they went to win later. Nepal lost to Scotland by 3 runs in the first match of ICC WCL Championship.
Players to watch
Anil Mandal- Anil usually plays a big knock once he gets settled. With a hundred to his name in the first game, Nepal’s highest grosser in the domestic circuit, and the player with 2 international, and 4 domestic centuries to his name will look to play another big knock for this country tomorrow.
Prestom Mommsen– Scotland skipper Mommsen has been in great form lately, guiding his team to the final of ICC T20 WCQ 2015. His innings of 78 runs from just 62 balls won the match for Scotland on Wednesday. He’ll be looking to carry out his form in the next match.