The Nepalese U19 Cricket Team has departed to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to participate in the 2023 U19 Asia Cup.
The Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) organized a program in Kathmandu to bid farewell to the U19 team. CAN’s president Chatur Bahadur Chand, secretary Paras Khadka and sports minister Dig Bahadur Limbu were present in the program.
Nepal qualified for the Asia Cup winning the title of ACC U19 Premier Cup. UAE and Japan also qualified for the tournament finishing second and third respectively.
Originally scheduled to take place in Pakistan, the tournament’s venue has been shifted to the UAE. Eight nations are slated to compete in the event which will be played from 8th December to 17th December. Nepal is in Group A alongside India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Likewise, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Japan and UAE are in Group B.
On December 8, Nepal is scheduled to take on Pakistan in their inaugural match. Subsequently, they are set to compete against Afghanistan on December 10, and then face India in another match on December 12.
Skipper Dev Khanal expressed confidence in the team’s preparation for the tournament, stating, “We have readied ourselves thoroughly. Our aim is to sustain the positive momentum, much like our seniors.” Meanwhile, Head Coach Jagat Tamata conveyed the team’s enthusiasm about facing India and Pakistan, emphasizing the rigorous effort they’ve put into their preparations.
Nepal has made a few changes to the squad following the ACC U-19 Premier Cup. Gulshan Jha, who was previously engaged in national team duties, is set to rejoin the squad. Additionally, spinner Tilak Bhandari and wicketkeeper Bipin Rawal have been included in the team. However, left-arm pacer Durgesh Gupta, Dipak Bohara, and Milan Bohara did not make the cut for the squad.
Nepal’s squad: Dev Khanal (c), Dipesh Kandel, Gulshan Jha, Hemant Dhami, Subash Bhandari, Aakash Tripathi, Arjun Kumal, Deepak Bohara, Uttam Thapa Magar, Dipak Dumre, Aakash Chand, Bishal KC, Tilak Raj Bhandari, Bipin Rawal.