Birgunj and Biratnagar make winning start

Kathmandu/Cricnepal: Region Number II Birgunj and Region Number I Biratnagar registered their first win of the Wai Wai U-19 National Cricket Tournament that kicked off today in caital.

In a first match played at T.U. Ground, Birgunj defeated host Region Number III Kathmandu by seven wickets. While in the match played at Pulchowk Engineering College Ground, Biratnagar defeated Region Number VIII Pokhara by 43 runs.

Kathmandu who chose to bat first after winning the toss posted a low total of 154 runs before losing all wickets in 49.4 overs.

Aakib Ansari picked up three wickets, Hasim Ansari picked up two wickets while Jatta Shankar Sharraf, Jitendra Mukhiya, Naresh Raj Giri and Bibek Dali shared a scalp each for Biratnagar to restrict Kathmandu to a defendable score.

Bijay Gautam top scored for the host with 30 runs off 83 balls remaining unbeaten while Soonnam Gautam(24), Indra Kamal Manandhar(23) and Pawan Shrestha(11) were some other major contributors.

Kathmandu received 38 runs as extras.

In reply, man of the match Hasim Ansari scored a half century off just 51 balls, later as 61-ball 64 with eight fours and a six as Birgunj chased the target revised target of 151 runs easily in 27 overs losing only three wickets. The match was reduced to 47 overs due to rain. Ansari shared an opening partnership of 70 runs with Bijay Ghalan who scored 26 runs off 49 balls while Shiva Tandukar made a 36-ball 39 with two fours and three sixes. Suraj Kurmi remained not out at 15 runs off 13 balls including a six and a four.

Soonam Gautam and Jagat Chhetri picked up a wicket each for Kathmandu.

In an another match, Biratnagar scored 169 runs in 43.4 overs losing all wickets. Anup Karki remained unbeaten at 50 runs off 91 deliveries that included nine fours and a six. Prakash Shah added 20 runs before Amit Dahal departed at 22 runs. Amal Das also scored 19 runs for Biratnagar. None of the other batsman reached the double digit score.

Amrit Shrestha grabbed three wickets, Santosh Upadhyay, Ishwor Magar and Suraj Gurung picked up two wickets each while Sushil Khanal took a wicket for Pokhara.

In reply, five wickets from the man of the match Amit Dahal, three wickets from Rohit Singh and two wickets from Puran BK helped Biratnagar to restrict Pokhara to 126 runs in 36 overs before losing all wickets. Dahal bowled 10 overs with four maiden overs to concede only 27 runs.

Only two batsman played their part and scored good runs, while the others even did not manage to keep their score to a double digit. Amrit Shrestha scored 42 runs off 66 balls with four fours and two sixes while Sagar Bhattarai scored 29 runs off 82 balls.

On Monday, Birgunj will take on Pokhara at T.U. Ground while Kathmandu will play against Biratnagar at Engineering Ground, Pulchowk.