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Scotland edge Nepal in thriller

Partnership of 133 runs between Preston Mommsen and Con de Lange proves decisive in three-run win

Scotland edge Nepal in thriller - Cricket News
Preston Mommsen scored 78 off 62 balls.

Preston Mommsen’s 78 and Con De Lange’s unbeaten 55 first up and then a collective effort from the bowlers helped Scotland clinch a thrilling three-run win over Nepal in the seventh match of the ICC World Cricket League Championship at Cambusdoon New Ground in Ayr on Wednesday (July 29). 

In a game reduced to 36 overs per side after overnight rain and wet outfield delayed the start by over three hours, Scotland posted 235 for 7 and then managed to keep Nepal to 232 for 5 to register its first win of the championship. 

Chasing a stiff target, Nepal made a promising start, with Mahesh Chhetri (21 in 39 balls) and Anil Mandal scoring 44 runs for the first wicket to keep things steady. After Chhetri fell, caught at gully off Gavin Main trying to up the ante, Gyanendra Malla and Mandal took the team forward with some crisp strokes. 

Malla (18 in 24) and Mandal added 32 runs for the second wicket before de Lange broke the stand with a well-directed bouncer that took the top edge of Malla’s bat and was accepted by Kyle Coetzer. 

When Malla fell, Nepal was 76 for 2, and Mandal and Paras Khadka then batted together for over 16 overs, adding 139 runs for the third wicket. But the Scotland bowlers did well to hold their nerves despite Mandal (97 in 90) and Khadka (77 in 57) being in complete control, finally breaking the partnership when Richie Berrington caught Khadka off Main. 

Sharad Vesawkar was run out without facing a ball and Safyaan Sharif accounted for Mandal and the Nepal chase went off track. It needed 17 off the last over and Sompal Kami, who scored 11 not out in three balls, hammered a six and a four but Nepal fell just short. 

Earlier in the day, Scotland fought its way back after being in spot of bother at 114 for 5 by the end of 22nd over. 

De Lange, playing his first 50-over game for Scotland, collaborated with Mommsen, the Scotland captain, to add 113 runs in just 12.5 overs to bring the innings back on track. De Lange’s unbeaten innings included four hits to the boundary and two over it, while Mommsen fell in the 34th over, bowled by Kami, after a well-compiled effort, studded with five fours and four sixes. 

Things started well for Scotland with George Munsey (19) and Coetzer (41) making run-a-ball 42 for the first wicket after Nepal won the toss and elected to field. 

While Nepal would have hoped that the wicket of Munsey, who fell first, would help them curb the scoring rate, things turned out differently even though Mathew Cross, Craig Wallace and Berrington fell in quick succession. 

It was the Mommsen-de Lange stand that proved crucial in the end.

The two sides will now meet on Friday at the same venue for their next game of the championship. 

To see the full scorecard of this game, please click here.

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