NPL Sporrs,17th January: Biratnagar on Tuesday claimed the second U-19 Itahari Premier League Twenty20 cricket tournament with a thrilling three-run victory over Dhangadi at the Nepal DVM School grounds in Itahari.
Electing to bat first, Biratnagar were dismissed for 112 in 20 overs but their bowlers did well to defend the below-par total by restricting Dhangadi to 110 runs in 20 overs. Man-of-the-final Mukunda Yadav shone for Biratnagar picking up three wickets, while Dipesh Kandel and Minash Thapa claimed two scalps apiece.
Narayan Joshi, who recently played for the Nepal team in the ACC U-16 Eastern Region cricket tournament, top scored for Dhangadi with 27 runs but his effort was not enough to take his team across the finishing line. Ajaya Bista was their second best scorer with 20 runs and Lokesh Bam made 17.
Earlier, Biratnagar didn’t have big contributors with Thapa making 24 runs. Yadav was the allround performer contributing 18 runs to the team total and Amit Yadav (10) was their next batsman to score in double figures. Sagar Bhandari took three wickets for Dhangadi and Joshi got rid of two batsmen.
Along with the title, Biratnagar collected Rs 100,000 cash prize and runners-up Dhangadi got Rs 50,000. Biratnagar allrounder Thapa was adjudged the player-of-the-tournament, while Arun Airee (batsman) of Kathmandu and Manish Dahal (bowler) of Itahari were the other individual winners. They got Rs 5,000 apiece. In all, six teams took part in the league-cum-knockout tournament that also included one team from organisers Itahari Cricket Academy, Nepalgunj and Bhairahawa.