•      Fri Sep 29 2023

Asia Cup Cricket: Pakistan beats Nepal by 238 runs

Kathmandu, Aug 30: Chasing a mammoth victory target of 343 runs, Nepal lost to host Pakistan by 238 runs in the inaugural match of the Asia Cup cricket tournament, 2023 organised by the Asian Cricket Council.

Nepal were all out in 23.4 overs, with only 104 runs on the board. After losing two wickets in the first over and the third in the second over, Nepal was in serious trouble in their pursuit of making a match out of it. Arif Sheikh and Sompal Kami played patiently before being out by scoring 26 and 28 runs respectively. Gulshan Jha was the only other player to reach double figures.

For Pakistan, Sadab Khan took 4 wickets while Shaheen Shah Afridi and Haris Rauf took 2 wickets each.

Earlier, batting first after winning the toss, Pakistan scored 342 runs riding on 151 runs in 131 balls by Pakistani captain Babar Azam. Iftikar Ahmed scored 109 runs in just 71 balls to give Nepal an improbable target to register a victory.

Mohammad Rizwan scored 44 runs, as the hosts put up a huge target at the loss of 6 wickets in 50 overs.

Though starting well, taking 4 Pakistani wickets by the 28th over, Nepali bowlers failed to keep the momentum and the 5th wicket partnership of 200 runs in 125 balls between Babar Azam and Iftikar Ahmed did the damage, giving an almost impossible target to Nepal in its maiden match in the Asia Cup.

Sompal Kami took 2 wickets and Karan KC and Sandeep Lamichhane took one wicket each, but failed to stop the Pakistani batsmen from scoring heavily in the second half of the innings.

Nepal will now play against India in the match to be played in Sri Lanka on coming September 4. Nepal is in Group A with Pakistan and India, while Group B comprises Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.