Paras Khadka ´Man of the series´
KATHMANDU, Oct 12: Nepal and the UAE shared the ACC Trophy Elite title as the final between the two teams ended in a tie at Sharjah Cricket Ground, on Friday.
The scores of both the teams tied on 241 runs. Chasing a 242-run target, Nepal managed the score, losing nine wickets in 50 overs. For Nepal, Subash Khakurel top scored with 55. Likewise, Anil Mandal made 44 and Sharad Vesawkar remained not out on 38.
Lower middle order batsman Saqib Ali smashed a timely unbeaten century for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as the host posted a challenging total against Nepal in the final of ACC Trophy Elite at Sharjah Cricket Ground, on Friday.
Sent in to take strike first, the UAE scored 241 for the loss of six wickets in 50 overs. Ali, who came to bat at number 6, when the team was tottering at 70/4 in the 20th over, faced 103 balls and hit eight boundaries and two sixes.
UAE skipper Khurram Khan made 61 off 79 balls before falling to Shakti Gauchan, who was the most successful Nepali bowler, taking three wickets in his 10 overs conceding 36 runs.
Abdul Shakoor (20), Haroon Iftikhar (24) and Rohan Mustafa (21 not out) were the other major contributors to the UAE innings. Apart from Gauchan, Sanjam Regmi accounted for one UAE scalp. Two UAE batsmen were run out.
Nepal secured the final berth defeating Malaysia by 21 runs in the semifinal on Wednesday while the UAE thrashed Afghanistan by eight wickets to make it to today´s final.
Captain Paras Khadka, vice captain Gyanendra Malla, Pradip Aire, Prithu Banskota, Binod Bhandari, Shakti Gauchan, Subhas Khakurel, Akash Mandal Basanta Regmi, Sanjam Regmi and Sharad Bheswakar have earned place in the final eleven against the UAE.
Two fast bowlers Amrit Bhattarai and Binod Das have been left out from the final eleven due to concerns over the fitness, with Bhattarai suffering from chest pain and Das having problems with his knee.
It is the third ACC Trophy Elite final for Nepal and second in a row. However, Nepal is yet to win the title.
Nepali national team had broken the jinx against the UAE in the opening match of the ongoing tournament and defeated the host by four wickets last week. Earlier, Nepal had encountered the UAE six times in the One-Day format and lost all of them.
The UAE is higher ranked team than Nepal in ICC World Cricket League (WCL). The UAE is currently enjoying WCL Division 2 status and is among the top eight associate nation teams that can play in the World Cricket League Championship, from which top two teams qualify for the upcoming Cricket World Cup.
Khadka ´Man of the series´
Nepali skipper Paras Khadka has been declared ´Man of the Series´.