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World Cup Qualifiers: Nepal suffer 116-run defeat to Zimbabwe

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KATHMANDU — Nepal went down by 116 runs against Zimbabwe in their first match of ICC World Cup Qualifiers match on Sunday.

Chasing the huge run-target of 381 runs, Nepal could make only 264 runs in 50 over with the fall of eight wickets.

Sharad Bheswakar (52) and Aarif Sheikh (50) both scored half-centuries while skipper Paras Khadka (40) put on a notable performance as Nepal finished with 264/8 runs from their 50 overs.

Earlier, host Zimbabwe won the toss and chose to bat at Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo, before making a total of 380-6 in their allotted 50 overs. In reply, Nepal managed to score just 264 runs losing eight wickets in 50 overs.

Two batsmen Brendan Taylor and Sikandar Raza smashed centuries for Zimbabwe, in the match where Nepali bowlers displayed poor performance. Taylor hit 91-ball 100 that included one six and seven fours while top scorer Raza smashed 123 runs off 66 balls.

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Cephas Zhuwao and Solomon Mire gave strong start to the innings making 41 and 52 runs respectively. Likewise, Craig Ervine contributed 50-ball 34 where as Hamilton Masakadza scored 17 runs facing 23 deliveries.

Sompal Kami and Basant Regmi took two wickets each for Nepal while Lalit Rajbanshi and Sandeep Lamichhane claimed one each.

Opening duo Gyanendra Malla and Dilip Nath creating nine runs partnership for the first wicket. Nath was bowled out for two runs while Vice-captain Malla contributed 59-ball 32.

Captain Paras Khadka who came to bat at third number tried to lay foundation with smashing 40 runs facing 37 deliveries while Dipendra Singh Airee contributed 23 runs.

Likewise, Rohit Kumar Poudel was other notable contributor for Nepal with 30 runs made facing 32 deliveries. Sompal Kami and Sandeep Lamichhane were unbeaten with 12 and seven runs respectively.

Nepal will now take on Scotland in their second match in the Group B on Thursday.

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SAFF U-15 women’s championship begins today; India face Sri Lanka in inaugural match

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THIMPU — Six under 15 teams from Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and Nepal are participating the second edition of South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) U-15 Women’s championship, Thimphu that is kicking off from Thursday.

India and Sri Lanka are facing each other in an inaugural game at the Changlingmithang stadium. The match is taking place at Thimphu-based Changlimithang Stadium at 4:00 pm local time.

Similarly, Bangladesh and Pakistan under Group B are facing each other in the second game scheduled at 7:00 pm local time today itself.

At the pre press conference held in Thimphu on Wednesday, the coaches and team captains from six countries said that SAFF U-15 Women’s championship 2018 would be the toughest championship.

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Of the six countries, Sri Lanka and Pakistan are taking part in the championship for the first time. Bhutan is hosting the 10-day championship for the first time.

Bangladesh had won the title by defeating India 1-0 in the first edition of the Championship held in Bangladesh.

Nepal’s 32-member women’s football team had left Tuesday for Bhutan to play in the Second U-15 SAFF Championship Women Football.

The team comprises 23 players, three coaches, five officials and one sports journalist. Nepal is placed in Group B of the Championship. Nepal will play against Pakistan on August 11 in the first game and against Bangladesh on August 13.

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