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Nepal team for ACC Emerging Nations Cup announced



KATHMANDU — The Nepal national cricket team has been announced for the ACC Emerging Nations Cup scheduled for March 25 to April 4 in Bangladesh.

A three-member selection team comprising ICC-Asia Cricket Development Officer Venkatapathy Raju, Nepal head coach Jagat Tamatta and skipper Khadka had made the selection.

Vice-captain Gyanendra Malla will lead the 15-member team after captain Paras Khadka withdrew from the tournament citing his health condition.

Other members in the team are Sharad Vesawkar (Vice-Captain),Binod Bhandari, Sagar Pun, Md. Arif Sheikh, Mahaboob Alam, Dipendra Sing Airee, Sandeep Lamichhane, Mahamad Asif Sheikh, Avinash Karn, Sunil Dhamala, Bhuwan Karki, Sushan Bhari, Dipesh Shrestha and  Dilip Nath.

Likewise, four reserve players —  Kushal Bhurtel, Jitendra Kumar Mukhiya, Rajesh Pulami Magar and Sushil Kandel — have also been named:

Nepal’s National team, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Afghanistan and the U-23 teams from the four Test-playing nations of the region — India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh — are taking part in the event.

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Putin orders withdrawal of Russian forces from Syria



MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the withdrawal of Russian forces from Syria on Monday morning, saying that after a two year military campaign, Moscow and Damascus had achieved their mission of destroying Islamic State.

Putin made the announcement during a surprise visit to Russia’s Hmeymim air base in Syria’s Latakia Province where he held talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and addressed Russian military servicemen.

“I order the defense minister and chief of the general staff to start the withdrawal of Russian troops to the site of their permanent deployment,” Putin stated, speaking in front of Russian military personnel at Khmeimim.

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Mr Putin said that in the space of two years the Russian and Syrian militaries have “defeated the most battle-hardened grouping of international terrorists,” adding that he had made the decision that a significant number of the Russian military contingent in Syria should return to Russia.

Russia first launched air strikes in Syria in September 2015 in its biggest Middle East intervention in decades, turning the tide of the conflict in Assad’s favor while dramatically increasing Moscow’s own influence in the Middle East.

After a short visit to Syria, the Russian president headed for Cairo, where he is scheduled to hold talks with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.


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