In a spirited send-off organized by the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN), the national U-19 cricket team bid farewell as they set out for the ICC U-19 World Cup in South Africa. The event, held in the capital, saw the presence of distinguished guests including National Sports Council Member Secretary Tanka Lal Ghising, CAN President Chatur Bahadur Tand, Vice President Roshan Singh, and Secretary Paras Khadka.
The upcoming tournament marks Nepal’s return to the U-19 World Cup after an eight-year hiatus, igniting a wave of enthusiasm among the players and cricket enthusiasts. Captain Dev Khanal expressed satisfaction with the team’s preparations, highlighting the utilization of top-notch facilities during the week-long training camp.
Despite the constraints of not being able to engage in external matches, Khanal radiated excitement about realizing the dream of representing Nepal on the global stage. He expressed confidence in achieving commendable results during the competition.
Head coach Jagat Tamata conveyed gratitude for the combined efforts of CAN and the players, emphasizing that the team is both mentally and physically prepared for the challenges ahead. Tamata, who considers himself fortunate to return to the World Cup after eight years, underscored the collaborative efforts that have propelled the team to this prestigious tournament.
CAN President Chatur Bahadur Chand extended his best wishes to the team, acknowledging the significance of their participation after an extended hiatus. He announced the team’s plan to engage in practice matches against Namibia and Scotland before the official kick-off. The Nepalese team is scheduled to play their first match against New Zealand on January 21.
Reflecting on the fortuitous alignment of events, National Sports Council Member Secretary Tanka Lal Ghising remarked on Nepal’s senior team and U-19 team participating in the Asia Cup in 2023 and now heading to the World Cup in 2024.
Nepal finds itself in a challenging Group D, alongside cricket powerhouses Pakistan, New Zealand, and Afghanistan. The team is slated to play warm-up matches against Scotland and West Indies before their official World Cup campaign begins.
The departure of the Nepalese U-19 cricket team for South Africa marks not only a sporting journey but also a symbol of national pride and anticipation for cricket enthusiasts across the nation.
Nepal U19 Squad for U19 World Cup
Dev Khanal ( c ) , Arjun Kumal, Aakash Tripathi, Dipak Prasad Dumre, Durgesh Gupta, Gulshan Kumar Jha, Dipesh Prasad Kandel, Bishal Bikram KC, Subhash Bhandari, Deepak Bohara, Dipak Bohara, Uttam Rangu Thapa Magar, Bipin Rawal, Tilak Raj Bhandari, Akash Chand
- vs Scotland on January 13
- vs West Indies on January 16
U-19 World Cup Fixtures (Group D):
- January 21: vs New Zealand
- January 24: vs Pakistan
- January 27: vs Afghanistan
The 2024 ICC Under-19 Men’s Cricket World Cup is set to unfold in South Africa from January to February, featuring 16 teams in 41 matches. Defending champions India are among the participating nations, with Sri Lanka originally slated to host but the venue shifted to South Africa due to ICC’s suspension of the Sri Lanka Cricket Board.
The tournament witnessed an extensive qualification process, with 11 teams securing automatic berths and five determined through regional pathways. Nepal, qualifying through the Asia Qualifier, emerged as the first team to secure a spot.
Sixteen teams are divided into four groups (A, B, C, D), with the top three from each group advancing to the Super Six stage. The placement stage involves fourth-placed teams, and the Super Six stage narrows down to the top two teams from each group. The top two teams from each group in the Super Six stage proceed to the semi-finals.