Tanka Prasad Paneru, General Secretary of the Cricket Association of Nepal, believes his country will be playing in the ICC Cricket World Cup in the next decade.
How popular is cricket in your country?
Cricket is a game that has been gaining popularity in Nepal and is now the second most popular game only after soccer. There has been a continuous increase in the number of players being involved in cricket and the number of cricket tournaments in all the six development regions has also increased.
What challenges do you face in the growth of the game?
The challenge for the growth of cricket in Nepal is infrastructure development. We have a limited number of grounds and the maintenance of the ground is a difficult task.
How much schools cricket is available in your country to aid the future development of players?
There has been a lot of involvement of schools in the U-15 Cricket tournaments in Nepal as it is an inter-school cricket tournament and there are a lot of schools participating. We expect the numbers of schools competing in this tournament to continue to rise.
What are your expectations for the event and how far do you think you will be able to progress through the WCL structure?
We are very confident of securing first or second position in the ICC World Cricket League Division 5 tournament and qualifying for World Cricket League Division 4 tournament to be held in Tanzania as we have been practising hard for this tournament. We certainly are looking forward to progressing through every WCL and reaching the World Cup qualifier.
Do you think cricket in your country will be in a very different position to its current state in ten years time? What are the reasons for this?
Yes, Nepal will probably play the ICC Cricket World Cup in ten years time as cricket is very much growing in this nation - it can even overtake soccer as the most popular game in the country. Besides the Cricket Association of Nepal, many schools, clubs and colleges have been regularly conducting various tournaments and have been increasing prizes to the participating teams and the outstanding players. Nepal is expecting to play in the ICC World Cup Cricket and in ten years time we believe that it is possible.