Scotland restricts Nepal to 137 before registering comfortable eight-wicket win
Asked to bat first, Nepal did not get off to the greatest of starts, losing early wickets to sink to 35 for 3. But Paras Khadka, the captain, and Binod Bhandari put together 47 runs for the fourth wicket in 6.4 overs to stabilise the innings.
But Safyaan Sharif dismissed Bhandari for 28 while Gordon Goudie dismissed Khadka for 27 in a span of three overs and Nepal managed to add only 35 runs after that to end with 137 for 7. Sharif and Goudie picked up three wickets each.
In reply, Scotland lost Richie Berrington, the opener, in the fourth over, but Nepal found little going its way after that. Calum MacLeod remained unbeaten on 82, scored off just 64 balls, and shared an unbeaten stand of 73 runs with Kyle Coetzer, the captain, for the third wicket to take Scotland over the line with four balls to spare. Matt Machan was the only other wicket to fall.
“It was a very good all round performance today from the team against a very good Nepal side, they were tough opponents and am glad we came out to be the winning side.
“We just had to stick to our game plan we had for the match and not do anything different. We take every day and match as it comes. This is the nature of Twenty20 cricket; you can be on the wrong end of the stick on some days and not do much about it. We just stuck to our plans and it worked for us today,” Kyle Coetzer, Scotland's captain said.
Calum MacLeod was named Man of the Match for his match-winning knock.
“Delighted with my knock, we had to get a win with the tournament underway and play some decent cricket, so happy to finally get our first win. Two days ago I was bit disappointed getting out coming close to a win. Today I wanted to go and bat through and use previous innings experience and win the game for us,” he said.
Paras Khadka, Nepal's captain said the top three-five batsmen got off to starts, but couldn't capitalize on those starts. “We were 15 to 20 runs short today, but we still tried to pull it back but then Scotland batted well and couple of overs here and there could have changed the situation. Few overs here and there could have changed the situation but again you have to take it in your stride in such a tournament. But we are up for the challenge in rest of the matches,” he said.
“We will give our best, we are here to compete and we want to qualify for World twenty20 in Bangladesh it is as simple as that for us. We have trained hard and will play hard. The boys are pretty confident and they want to qualify, if we play to our potential we should be there,” he added.
Scotland is now placed seventh on the Group B table, having lost two of their three matches. It will now face Kenya on Tuesday in Dubai, while Nepal will play Papua New Guinea at Sharjah on the same day.