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Just as the players were getting ready for the run chase, there was a slight drizzle. The covers were brought on but it looks like they are being taken off which is good news.
Right then, the game is nicely poised at the halfway mark. Nepal have done exceptionally well to reach 230 and will turn up for their bowling effort with momentum behind them. This target is nowhere close to being daunting by India’s standards but loss of early wickets can put them under pressure. Will Rohit Sharma and Co. chase it down and by doing so, secure a place in the Super Four? We will find out when we return for the chase.
Aasif Sheikh is down for a chat. He says that he got the start in the early overs and wanted to bat deep but unfortunately couldn’t get there. Adds that they were looking for a score of around 250 but will take 230. mentions that they are looking to play good cricket at this level and says that the ball is doing a bit from a length so will look to hit that length. Ends by applauding the Nepali crowd that has come in huge numbers.
Playing in their first international game against India, Nepal did not get overawed by the occasion and looked confident right from the start. The two Nepal openers showed good intent and did not shy away from playing their shots. They made sure to make India pay for those dropped catches, with Kushal Bhurtel being the aggressor among the two batters in the opening stand. Once the opening stand was broken, Nepal did seem to lose their way in the middle overs, but Aasif Sheikh stood firm at the other end and brought up his fifty. At 144-6, Sompal Kami and Dipendra Singh Airee got together and put the innings back on track with a 50-run stand. When these two were batting, it looked like Nepal would cross 250 but the departure of Kami meant Nepal had to settle for 230.
Nepal lost their last 3 wickets for 2 runs and have been rolled over for 230! They fail to bat their full quota of 50 overs, but you’ve got to stand up and applaud what has been an admirable effort from the minnows. It has been a frustrating day for India so far but they will be pleased to bowl Nepal out. After Rohit Sharma won the toss and inserted Nepal into bat under favourable bowling conditions, it was far from an ideal start for them. The Indians were pretty lethargic in the field, dropping three catches in the first five overs. Moreover, they were unable to bowl tight lines and lengths consistently, which allowed Nepal to get off to a swift start. As he has done so often, Shardul Thakur helped India break the opening stand to start India’s fightback in the game. Ravindra Jadeja kept it tight from his end and dismantled the Nepali middle order. With Nepal 6 wickets down, it looked like India would run through the Nepal lower order but they were stalled by the partnership between Sompal Kami and Dipendra Singh Airee. That said, they did well not to allow the tail of Nepal to wag.
48.2 overs (0 Run) OUT! TIMBER! Mohammed Siraj finishes things off and picks up his third wicket as well. Full and quick at 142 clicks, sliding into the off pole. Lalit Rajbanshi stays put and looks to drive it away but is beaten all ends up. The ball goes on to castle into the off stump and Rajbanshi departs for a duck and Nepal are bundled out for 230 runs in 48.2 overs.
48.1 overs (1 Run) Good length angling onto middle, Karan KC makes room and dabs it down to third man for a single.
47.6 overs (0 Run) Full and quick outside off, Lalit Rajbanshi leaves it alone.
47.5 overs (0 Run) Fuller one on off stump, Lalit Rajbanshi toe-ends it toward backward point and looks for a single but is sent back and rightly so.
Lalit Rajbanshi is the last man in.
47.4 overs (0 Run) OUT! RUN OUT! A complete lack of communication and Nepal are nine down now. Mohammad Shami takes pace off and bowls it on a shorter length outside off. Sandeep Lamichhane taps it straight to extra cover and looks to scamper through for the single. Karan KC sends him back but its too late. The substitute fielder Axar Patel picks up the ball and throws it to the keeper. Ishan Kishan dislodges the bails and Lamichhane isn’t even in the frame.
47.3 overs (1 Run) Length ball on the stumps, Karan KC tries to back away but is hurried and gets an inside edge past leg stump for a single.
47.2 overs (0 Run) OUT! TAKEN! Well held by Ishan Kishan and Sompal Kami’s fiery knock comes to an end. Mohammad Shami serves this one on a hard length in the channel and gets it to bounce a bit extra. Kami looks to stay back and ride the bounce by guiding it fine but gets an outside edge. Kishan springs to his right and pouches it nicely. Kami is a bit distraught with that dismissal but has done a fine job for his side.
47.1 overs (1 Run) Full and straight, in the blockhole. Sandeep Lamichhane backs away and hits it down to long on for a single.
46.6 overs (6 Runs) SIX! Sompal Kami is having a ball out there as he ends yet another over with a maximum. Mohammed Siraj persists with the short ball and bowls this one over middle. Kami stays back and drags the pull over the backward square leg fence for a biggie. Moves on to 48 now.
46.5 overs (0 Run) Good length around off, jagging back in, Sompal Kami covers the line and blocks it out.
46.4 overs (2 Runs) Another top edge that falls safe. A bumper right over middle, Sompal Kami is hurried and gets a top edge right over the keeper’s head. Kuldeep Yadav from third man moves around to his left and the batters get a coup;le of runs more.
46.3 overs (0 Run) Back of a length and around off, Sompal Kami looks to push off the back foot but is beaten on the outside edge.
46.2 overs (2 Runs) Just short! A good short ball at the body, Sompal Kami instinctively takes it on and pulls it aerially toward fine leg. Shreyas Iyer charges in from the deep but the ball lands short and Iyer does well to get his body behind the line. They get a couple of runs.
46.1 overs (1 Run) Good length around off, Sandeep Lamichhane backs away and slashes it away to deep point for a single.
45.6 overs (6 Runs) SIX! Oh, swatted away, amazing shot! Short but not short enough, around the top of middle, Sompal Kami stays back and picks it up before pulling it well over deep mid-wicket for a biggie.
45.5 overs (1 Run) Well short! Banged in very short, Sandeep Lamichhane charges down the track and tries to pull but gets a top edge over short fine leg for a single.
45.4 overs (1 Run) Fullish length on the pads, Sompal Kami gets an inside edge onto the pads as he tries to flick and the ball rolls toward square leg. They pick up a single.
45.3 overs (2 Runs) Does well in the end! Shorter and slower outside off, Sompal Kami goes for the upper cut but gets a thickish edge wide of third man. Shardul Thakur there nearly overruns it but manages to get his left hand out and make the stop. Two runs are taken.
45.2 overs (0 Run) Another slower one, this is floated up full and outside off, Sompal Kami drives it firmly but straight to extra cover.
45.1 overs (0 Run) Banged in short and outside off, Sompal Kami looks to back away and cut but mistimes it to point.
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