Momocricket Diaries 01: The Rise of the Private Leagues

Cheerleaders in Everest Premier League

The Rise of the Private Leagues

The memories of Dhangadhi Premier League (DPL) is still fresh in our minds. At that time, DPL was arguably the best cricket event ever played in Nepal. Heavy cash-prizes, live telecast on national TV, auctions, inclusion of all the top players of Nepal, etc are bound to make a lasting impact in our hearts. If that was not enough, Everest Premier League is set to better it and deliver a ‘never seen before’ tournament  in Nepal.

  • city based teams
  • live telecast with 12 camera angles
  • management team that has IPL experience
  • third umpire to be employed for the first time in Nepal
  • the biggest cash-prize event
  • three overseas international players in each team
  • match and expert analysis programs on TV

These are just a few of them, set to catch our imaginations coming December. EPL just signed the most expensive TV deal in the history of Nepal sports. If executed as planned, EPL will easily be the best sporting event so far in Nepalese soil.

Cheerleaders of Vishal Warriors
Cheerleaders during EPL 2016

Not only EPL, a former Nepal player is doing his best to establish a league on similar backdrop starting next week. Deepesh Khatri and his team are organizing Kaski region’s first premier cricket event by the name of Machhapuchhre Cricket League. Here as well, six franchise teams will be seen on the field, formed through auction that was held in Pokhara, albeit on a lesser scale. Slowly but surely, MCL will grow into another annual cricket event providing much-needed exposure and financial support to budding cricketers of our country.

It does not matter if Cricket Association of Nepal is non-existent and apparently in a mess created by themselves. Well, the private leagues are rising, and rising for the good.

“There is no issue of conflict of interest” – Deepesh Khatri

Machhapuchhre Cricket League (MCL) is organized by one of Pokhara’s oldest cricket club Machhapuchhre in association with Khukuri Entertainment. The tournament is a brain-child of former Nepal U19 international Deepesh Khatri. He is not only organizing the tournament but also participating in it as a player. Khatri will be leading his team Machhapuchhre Lions.

The 32-year-old quoted,”I always wanted to help cricket grow in Kaski and Pokhara. You see many players from the eastern part of Nepal and mid-western part of Nepal but I wanted to make a pool of players from the western part of Nepal who can represent our country at the highest level.”

Machhapuchhre Cricket League
Machhapuchhre Cricket League

“Before anything, I am a cricketer first which is my profession and passion. MCL is my idea but I will participate in it as a cricketer and be available as a player for my team. It is being managed by the members of Machhapuchhre Cricket Club (MCC) and Khukuri Entertainment group. There is no issue of conflict of interest.” -Deepesh Khatri

Is Paras Khadka an Australia fan or England fan?

It is a rhetorical question. Every Nepali cricket fan knows that Paras Khadka is an admirer of Australia cricket. In various interviews over the years, he has mentioned his love and support for the Aussies. However, YouTuber Bipul Bhattarai (aka Slog Sweep in YouTube) made this interesting video of Nepal national team’s skipper batting at nets during a practice session at TU ground, wearing England’s cricket kit. England is an arch nemesis of Australia in cricket. They play the most intense rivalry of cricket in the Ashes. Things just got interesting.

VIDEO Link : https://youtu.be/6sN0C6ex_bI?t=10s

All is not well with Test Cricket

Last week, somewhat, marked the renaissance of test cricket among the sleeping purist fans of the game. It was overwhelming and inspiring to see youngsters enjoying and rooting for test cricket amid the murmurs of reducing it to a 4-day-event due to lack of competition these days.

Ironically, it is two of the supposedly inferior teams in international hierarchy, blessing us with ample nail-biting moments that test cricket religions for. Still, before you blink your eye, England, Australia and India will start touring each other. Again, keeping the same distance with the teams like Bangladesh, West Indies, and Zimbabwe.

Not incompetence but lack of evenly scheduled tours, is killing Test cricket.

Bangladesh has just played 28 tests in the past 5 years. These numbers are significantly less than half of what India, Australia & England have played. However, England in this period has played 74 tests which equals to the sum of Pakistan (46) and Bangladesh (28). Here lies the problem of Test cricket, Marginalization. Test Cricket has turned itself into a failed social system where rich get richer and poor become poorer.

Not incompetence but lack of evenly scheduled tours, is killing Test cricket. The world saw what Shai Hope achieved. Michael Atherton, former England test opener and current commentator stated this was the best test match he had ever seen. Surprise, Surprise !! not any match from the Ashes or India series in the past few years.

So, and still, save Test cricket.

Why is Rihanna a savior of West Indies cricket?

We all know what Kraigg Braithwaite as a cricketer has achieved for West Indies. But what we don’t know is a global icon that helped him survive his turbulent school days.

Braithwaite was subjected to bullying in his school bus. Rihanna was four years senior to him. She protected him from being bullied by the other students. She would strongly condemn anyone trying to give Braithwaite a hard time. She used to make him sit on her lap in order to protect him from falling prey to the pranks pulled off by other students. She would also beat up the notorious lads who intended to trouble him.

West Indies all-rounder Carlos Brathwaite and internationally renowned pop-star Rihanna were classmates. ©Deccan Chronicle

Reports suggest that she is still protective about Kraigg Braithwaite. When he was the U-19 captain, Rihanna gave front row tickets to him and his entire team for her show in the USA.

Back in school, Rihanna was known as Robyn Fenty. She has an old connection with a number of West Indies cricketers. Carlos Braithwaite shares a good equation with the global superstar. He also stated that he could beat Rihanna in a dance face-off.

They all are from Combermere School in Barbados which has seen fifteen of its students who donned the national jersey in Tests. Chris Jordan and Gladstone Small even played for England.


Quote of the Week:

“He is an immense talent. When you see a talent like him, you make sure to back him up with ample opportunities” Binod Das on Aarif Sheikh’s selections.


Tweet of the week:

Mr. Hawa @mrh_188:

Article of the Week:

It was expected and it is happening again. 50-50 reduced to 20-20 and now the T10 league to be played in UAE. The way cricket is shrinking, it just might disappear one day.

FULL ARTICLE:  New T10 league announced in UAE, Chris Gayle, Shahid Afridi, Virender Sehwag signed up

With cricket from Nepal. Fondly known as Momocricket. Once managed NCFC cricket team. Firmly believe Nepal can achieve way more in cricket. Consultant Engineer at Dream Fapla.