By a Staff Reporter
Kathmandu (HamroKhelkud) – Dipesh Kandel’s exceptional bowling performance guided Nepal to an impressive seven-wicket victory during their second encounter in the ACC U-19 Premier Cup against Bahrain. This was Nepal’s second consecutive win, bringing them one step closer to the semifinals.
In their pursuit of a modest target of 78 runs, Nepal reached the total, losing three wickets in 11.4 overs. Skipper Dev Khanal remained unbeaten at 32 runs, hitting four fours and a six off 27 balls. Alongside him, Arjun Kumal also remained unbeaten at 32 runs, with five fours off 31 balls.
Opening batter, Deepak Bohora, was dismissed for four runs, while Uttam Thapa Magar and Deepak Prasad Dumre fell early, managing just a duck and one run, respectively. Bahrain’s Ayab Obaid Syed claimed all three wickets, conceding 26 runs in his four-over spell.
Earlier, Bahrain, after winning the toss and choosing to bat first, struggled to a total of 77 runs in 37.5 overs. Mohammad Basil Abdul Hakeem of Bahrain was the top scorer with 34 runs off 77 balls, including two fours and two sixes. Hakeem and Abhinav shared a 44-run partnership off 118 balls for the fifth wicket, rescuing Bahrain from a dire situation at 17-4 in 10.5 overs.
Dipesh Kandel played a pivotal role in Nepal’s victory, taking six wickets in 9.5 overs, with eight maidens and at a cost of only four runs. His performance earned him the Player of the Match award. Fast bowler Durgesh Gupta took four wickets for 22 runs, including a maiden, in his eight-over spell.
In their first match of the tournament, Nepal defeated Iran by a massive margin of 274 runs. Nepal are scheduled to play their final group match against Saudi Arabia on Thursday. A victory in this match will secure their spot in the semifinals.
The tournament consists of four groups, each comprising four teams. The team leading each group will progress to the semifinals. The finalists and the third-place team will proceed to compete in the prestigious Asia Cup.