By Sushil Thapa
After a prolonged spell of doubts, uncertainty and speculations, after all Nepal gets to host the much- anticipated ICC World Cricket League championship Nepal VS Namibia series in Kathmandu.
There was great public hue and cry, following cricket world governing body’s decision to move the venue from Nepal to India.
ICC took the decision after making a determination that Cricket Nepal Association (CAN) was woefully unprepared for the series.
Infuriated by CAN’s ineptness and incompetence, disillusioned and frustrated cricket aficionados took to streets in protest.
They had no choice but display their unmistakable ire towards CAN that has been a total disaster and virtually brought cricket to its knees.
CAN had all the time in the world but the ongoing feud between two rival cricket bodies impeded the preparation and readiness for the series. But that has all changed now.
Evidently sport goers are buoyant and relieved that the matches are taking place in their own backyard.
As a matter of fact, fans deserve a big thank you for their vociferous criticism of CAN and forcing them to urge ICC to reverse its decision to change the venue.
A mammoth crowd is expected to show up for the matches, without a doubt. Their boisterous support will of critical importance for Team Nepal’s performance, by and large.
The wrangling between the two cricket associations was a big distraction and created a stalemate situation, and as a result, the team’s preparation was pushed to the backburner.
With barely a month’s preparation, Nepal takes on a fairly formidable Namibia. They will require a massive performance to come out on top and must take full advantage of playing at home.
They have to remain focused and there is absolutely no room for complacency. It is the captain’s responsibility to keep the team from being complacent.
Once again experienced Paras Khadkha spearheads the team loaded with talent. It is an exciting blend of experienced players and fresh blood.
The selection committee has picked a host of spinners including upcoming spinners Sandip Lamichhane and Sushan for the simple reason pitches are tailor made to suit spinners.
In addition, Namibia seems vulnerable against spin. Spotlight will be on sensational leg spinner Lamichhane. He made a name for himself at the ICC Under -19 World Cup in Bangladesh for his spinning brilliance, earning him accolades from all quarters.
Should the spinners deliver the goods, Nepal stands a good chance to come up trumps. That said, however, nothing can be taken for granted. It is a team effort., and there need to be significant contribution from both batting and bowling.
Going by recent performances, batting is a major cause of concern for Nepal. The batting has to improve dramatically if Nepal is to win without any hiccups.
The presence of Coach Pubudu Dassanayake in his so-called mentor role gives the much need lift to the team.
CAN has been dangerously flirting with players and fans emotion, long as I can remember. All they are doing is killing Nepali cricket and will continue to do so.
Nepali cricket has gone through endless turmoil mainly because of dirty politics within CAN, making it a dirty, nauseating mess. Sadly there is no end in sight.
Furthermore, the National Sports Council (NSC) and Sports Ministry are not a penny worth. By failing to address the crisis in CAN, they have ridiculed themselves. This is a sheer case of culpable irresponsibility and negligence. They have no shame whatsoever.
After all, they are corrupt, dishonest political hacks with very little or no leadership qualities. They are in leadership position solely to enjoy power and perks. And they act in their best interests only.
Long as useless bureaucrats are at the helm of affairs, we have nothing to expect but a continuation of the same practices, no matter how much we protest.