Kathmandu, November 5
Oman have beaten Nepal in a dramatic final of the T20 World Cup Asia Qualifier which went to a super over.
Winning the toss and batting first, Nepal lost opener Aasif Sheikh early. But Kushal Bhurtel gave Nepal a good foundation scoring a quick-fire 31 before throwing his wicket to Aqib Ilyas. Wicket continued to fall as Sundeep Jora and Kushal Malla also got out cheaply.
With Nepal in the spot of bother, captain Rohit Paudel and Gulshan Jha played a blinder of an inning. Jha hit the Oman bowlers all over the park and hit 54 of just 25 balls while Paudel remained unbeaten on 52. The two put up a 78-run stand to give Nepal a shot at a competitive target as Nepal got to 184 thanks to a late burst from Karan KC who smashed 20 of six balls.
Bilal Khan stood out as the pick of the bowlers, claiming three wickets, while Zeeshan Maqsood also delivered an impressive performance. However, the remaining bowlers struggled to contain the Nepali batters, especially Paudel, Jha, and KC, who took them to task.
In reply, Nepal did not start the game well. Despite picking a wicket, Sompal Kami was poor conceding 37 runs in his first three overs. Kashyap Prajapati took on both Kami and Kushal Malla who had no answer for his clinical batting. Aqib Ilyas was as impressive but threw his wicket away to Jha.
Zeeshan Maqsood tried to take the chase ahead with Prajapati but once he got out to part-timer Bibek Yadav, a flurry of wickets followed. Some tight overs by Yadav and death over specialist Abinash Bohora gave Nepal control of the game. Bohora picked up the crucial wicket of Prajapati to put Nepal in the driving seat.
But in an interesting turn of events, Mohammad Nadeem turned the game on its head scoring 24 of nine balls to send the match to a super over.
Naseem Khushi then took over hitting three sixes off Abinash Bohora to all but win the game for Oman. Chasing 22 in the super-over, Nepal were restricted to 10 runs losing the final in heart breaking fashion.