Nepal are making their debut in the Asia Cup. This will be Nepal’s first ODI match against India.
Pallekele: After getting hammered by Pakistan by 238 runs in their Asia Cup 2023 opener, Nepal are looking forward to gaining as much as they can from heavyweights India when the teams clash in a Group A encounter on Monday. While Pakistan have already advanced to the Super Four stage, a win against Nepal will secure India’s place in the next stage too. However, rain may play a part on Monday too as it did during the India vs Pakistan encounter on Saturday at the Pallekele cricket stadium.
Nepal captain Rohit Paudel said on Sunday that playing against accomplished teams like India will help them massively in their cricketing journey. “We all are very excited, especially playing against India. We didn’t get such opportunities often. So, it’s a big opportunity for all of us to represent our country on the biggest stage,” said Paudel on eve of the match.
Paudel hoped that it would not rain on Monday. There is a prediction for 70 per cent rain in this city on the morrow. “Weather is not in our control. But we are hoping that we get an opportunity to play against India to showcase our talent on a bigger stage. Otherwise, we get to play only smaller teams.
We never imagined that we would get a chance to play two back-to-back matches against Pakistan and India. We want to make such opportunities count so that the cricketing world can take notice of us,” said Paudel.
Nepal qualified for the Asia Cup 2023 on the back of them winning the ACC Premier Cup earlier this year. Paudel said the entire team was proud of the journey so far. “I think about our journey (as a team). I think all the players have been working really hard for the last two, three years. And because of that hard work I think we are here. I think we deserve to be here,” he said.
The top two teams from each group will make it to the Super Four stage. With three points from two matches, Pakistan qualified for the Super Four from Group A. India have got one point from their washed out match against Pakistan. Nepal are yet to open their account.
If India win on Monday, they go through. In case the match gets washed out, then also India will advance with two points.
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