Nepal secures semi-final spot in ACC Premier Cup 2024

Nepal players celebrate the run out of Mohammad Nizakat Khan of Hong Kong, China during the ACC Men's Premier Cup 2024 Group A match between Nepal and Hong Kong, China held at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground Oman Cricket (Turf 1), Oman on April 15, 2024. Photo by: Pankaj Nangia / Creimas / Asian Cricket Council RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE

Kathmandu: Nepal clinched their third consecutive victory in the ACC Premier Cup 2024, affirming their spot in the semi-finals with a resounding win over Hong Kong by 8 wickets on Monday.

Chasing a target of 115 runs, Nepal exhibited a commanding performance, achieving the required total with ease while losing only 2 wickets in 12.2 overs. Opener Aasif Sheikh set the tone with a blistering knock of 40 runs off just 18 balls, including 3 fours and 3 sixes, while Kushal Bhurtel provided solid support with 32 runs off 19 balls, adorned with 3 fours and 2 sixes. The duo’s formidable partnership of 70 runs in 5.3 overs laid a strong foundation for Nepal’s victory.

Rohit Poudel contributed an unbeaten 25 runs off 20 balls, while Sandeep Zora added 19 runs from 17 balls. Hong Kong’s bowling attack, led by Ehsan Khan and Yasim Murtaza, managed to claim one wicket each but failed to contain Nepal’s aggressive batting lineup.

Earlier in the match, Hong Kong, after losing the toss and being asked to bat first at Al Amret Cricket Ground 1, struggled to set a competitive total, eventually being bowled out for 114 runs in 17.5 overs.

Captain Nizakat Khan was the lone standout performer for Hong Kong, scoring 34 runs off 26 balls, supported by opener Martin Kotji’s 8 runs. However, none of the other batsmen could make a significant impact against Nepal’s disciplined bowling attack.

Nepal’s fast bowler Abhinash Bohra starred with the ball, claiming 3 wickets for 29 runs in 4 overs, while Lalit Rajbanshi and Dipendra Singh Airee contributed with 2 wickets each. Karan KC also chipped in with 1 wicket, restricting Hong Kong’s batting lineup effectively.

Nepal’s triumphant journey in the ACC Premier Cup 2024 began with a convincing victory over Malaysia by five wickets in the first match, followed by a commanding 32-run win over Qatar in the second match. With three wins on the trot, Nepal’s stellar performance has solidified their status as a formidable contender in the tournament, as they now look ahead to the semi-finals with confidence.