- Shamser Khalid
Fans Climb Tree to Watch ICC Cricket WCL Two Match
Cricket fans in Nepal went to great lengths to watch their team compete in the ICC Cricket World Cup League Two 2019-23 against UAE. In a hilarious turn of events, fans were seen climbing trees outside the Tribhuvan International Cricket Ground in Kirtipur to catch a glimpse of the game.
A Twitter user shared a photo of at least half a dozen people perched atop a tree, while over 1000 spectators could be seen watching the game from the outskirts. The caption on the post read, “So much crowd outside the field, selfless love, and affection.”
The viral picture has been making rounds on social media, with cricket enthusiasts praising the devotion of the supporters. One of them was Scottish international cricketer Kyle Coetzer who described the images as 'simply amazing'. Even the Barmy Army social account acknowledged the electrifying atmosphere created by the passionate Nepalese cricket fans.
What Happened in the Match
Apart from the fanfare, the match also saw a high-scoring encounter between Nepal and UAE. UAE captain Muhammad Waseem won the toss and was elected to bat first. Asif Khan remained unbeaten on 101 off 42 balls, while Vriitya Aravind contributed 94 off 138 deliveries.
Nepal's Dipendra Singh emerged as the pick of the bowlers, with figures of 2/19. However, UAE's total of 310/6 in 50 overs seemed like a daunting task for Nepal.
But the Nepal team had other plans, as they scored 269/6 in 44 overs before rain interrupted play. Nepal was declared the winner by nine runs via the DLS method.
Controversy in the Match
While Nepal won the match, there was plenty of drama behind it. With just six overs left to play, bad light began to impact the match. The umpires made the call to suspend play, leaving the fate of both teams hanging in the balance. The tension was palpable as fans held their breath, waiting for the outcome.
And then came the controversy. The umpires consulted the Duckworth Lewis System (DLS), a complex formula that determines the winner in a rain-affected match.
Nepal was ahead on DLS, which meant they were declared the victors. But some questioned whether the decision was fair, given that the players on the pitch appeared to be unaware of the score until their jubilant teammates rushed onto the field to celebrate.
Nepal will now face a 10-team qualification tournament, with a chance to secure their place in the 2023 Cricket World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe. And if their performance against the UAE is anything to go by, they'll be a force to be reckoned with.
Status of Other Teams
Meanwhile, seven of the eight teams have already qualified for the 2023 WC in India, including England, New Zealand, India (as hosts), Bangladesh, Pakistan, Australia, and Afghanistan. The remaining three spots will be decided in a race between West Indies, South Africa, and Sri Lanka.
From August 2019 to March 2023, cricket enthusiasts had the privilege of witnessing the first edition of the ICC Cricket World Cup League 2. This enthralling tournament formed a critical part of the qualification process for the 2023 Cricket World Cup.
All matches in this prestigious tournament were played as One Day Internationals, adding an extra layer of excitement to the already intense competition.