Cricket fans throughout the country are buzzing about Nepal's recent triumph in World Cup League 2. The Nepali cricketers' extraordinary performance not only allowed them to defend their One-Day International (ODI) status, but also to secure their participation in the World Cup qualifiers, which will be held in June this year. The Nepali national team has made the country proud with their outstanding display of talent and technique on the pitch, earning them direct slots in the Zimbabwe qualifiers. They won 11 of their 12 League 2 matches, which is likely a record for any ICC affiliate team.
Given the squad's second-to-last place, no Nepali cricket fan believed in their wildest dreams that their team would proceed to the qualifier. However, the team's fortunes changed as they took the pitch for their 15th encounter. Since then Nepal won 11 of the previous 12 matches. During these 11 matches, the team easily defeated Scotland, Namibia, the UAE, and Papua New Guinea. All of these victories propelled the squad to third position in the League 2 point standings, securing them a direct berth in the qualifier. The team's success also allowed them to retain their ODI status. The improbable-looking performance prompted President Ram Chandra Paudel and Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda to applaud the squad and players for making the nation and people proud through their talent on the cricket fields.
President Paudel stated that the cricketers brought the prestige to the nation, and wished the team continued success. He urged the government to prioritise the development of sports and cricket facilities so that the Nepali team can do better in the future. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Prachanda congratulated the team on their victory and stated that the government will pay Rs. 300,000 in cash prizes to each member of the cricket team that achieved remarkable success. He also asked the officials to build modern floodlights and a scoreboard at the TU cricket ground, where international matches are held. In addition to government-provided cash incentives, provincial governments and agencies have also granted cash and other incentives to players from their respective regions. This means that anytime our cricketers put on an exciting display of skill, they are rewarded with a range of incentives to motivate them to do even better in the future.
Despite a dearth of adequate cricket infrastructure, our players have consistently delivered strong results. Imagine how wonderful our players' performances would have been if our country had good sporting infrastructure. At the moment, the country lacks an international cricket venue. The team's most recent triumph should motivate our policy-makers and planners to consider and act on additional sports infrastructure. Meanwhile, the cricket team's latest turnaround is partly owing to the players' improved performances, which are credited to the team's new coach, Monty Desai. His entrance to the Nepali cricket as a senior coach just two months before had made a significant difference in the team's overall performance. The team is anticipated to put up a better performance in the coming days under his guidance. Along with our players, our kudos must go to Desai, for motivating our players to put up an improved batting and bowling performance.