Nepal have become the first team to secure their spot in the semi-final of the ACC Under-16 Elite Cup after beating Bahrain yesterday in Kathmandu.
Winning the toss, the hosts chose to bat first and scored 206-7 from their 40 overs. Following on from his fine all-round performance on the second day, Nischal Pandey top scored with 74 from 62 balls. Nikhil Bolar was the pick of the Bahrain bowlers with 2-28.
Bahrain's reply got off to the worst possible start when they lost their first two wickets from the second and third balls without a run on the board. From then on, Bahrain struggled to score, and only 54 runs were scored before the third wicket fell in the 20th over. That wicket was the first for Nischal Pandey, who went on to complete another fine all-round performance by taking 5-28, amongst the ten bowlers used by Nepal, helping to restrict Bahrain to 121-9 from their 40 overs, giving Nepal the 85 run win.
Saudi Arabia won the toss and chose to bat first against Malaysia, but struggled in their innings, scoring 125 before being dismissed in the 37th over. Syahadhat Ramli was the pick of the Malaysian bowlers with 4-25.
Malaysia lost two wickets early on in their reply, but survived that brief scare and knocked off the runs in 24.1 overs to win by six wickets. Ahmad Tajuddin led the way with an unbeaten 45.
The other match of the day saw Singapore secure a thumping win over Thailand. Like all teams so far, Singapore won the toss and chose to bat at Tribhuvan University, and scored their runs quickly, making 246-5 from their 40 overs. Vikas Rajagopal top scored with 61.
In reply, only one Thai batsmen reached double figures, and their total of 71 in 31.4 overs would have been a lot worse had Malaysia not given away 33 runs in extras. Shivam Ahuja was the pick of the Singapore bowlers, taking three wickets for just nine runs.
The last group games take place today, and the semi-finals and play-off matches will begin on Sunday.
Nepal beat Bahrain by 85 runs
Army School Ground, Kathmandu, 11 March
Nepal 206-7 (40 overs, N Pandey 74)
Bahrain 121-9 (40 overs, N Pandey 5-28)
Malaysia beat Saudi Arabia by 6 wickets
Engineering Ground, Kathmandu, 11 March
Saudi Arabia 125 (36.2 overs, Mohammad Usman 37, S Ramli 4-25, N Nabil 3-20)
Malaysia 126-4 (24.1 overs, Ahmad Tajuddin 45*)
Singapore beat Thailand by 175 runs
Tribhuvan University, 11 March
Singapore 246-5 (40 overs, V Rajagopal 61, I Shekhar 46, M Kulkarni 44*, S Anand 3-58)
Thailand 71 (31.4 overs, S Ahuja 3-9)