1 year ago
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Well played Sandy!
Until few months back, it was like a fairy tale for Nepali cricket fans that any player from Nepal could be part of the Indian Premiere League - a popular T20 professional cricket league in the world. But the extraordinary happened when Sandeep Lamichanne, a 17-year-old leg spinner from Nepal, was auctioned at base price of IRs 2 million by Delhi Daredevils in Vivo IPL 2018.
When Sandeep started playing in India, the Nepali cricket lovers had to hold their breaths to see his magical bowling spell against some of the world’s prominent cricket players.
It was long that the Nepali cricket fans had waited to see any Nepali cricketer playing in the IPL. When they saw the bowling action of Sandeep, also known as Sandy, in IPL, they felt their patience was finally rewarded.
In the IPL, he showed some brilliant performance. In the three matches against Royal Challengers Bangalore, Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians, he picked five wickets of some of the world’s best batsmen -- Parthiv Patel, Suresh Raina, Surya Kumar Yadav, Kieron Pollard, and Krunal Pandya -- by giving just 82 runs. He has successfully ended his IPL journey in the fourth place in term of economy rate and seventh in terms of strike rate. Sandeep was also awarded as the FBB Stylish Player of the Match against Chennai Super Kings. He will also feature in ICC World XI against the West Indies in T20 on May 31.
My City’s Kiran Lama talked to Nepali national cricket team captain Paras Khadka and cricket enthusiasts from diverse backgrounds to get their views of Sandeep Lamichanne’s outstanding debut in the IPL. Excerpts:
Captain of Nepal’s National Cricket Team
Sandeep Lamichanne is a fabulous young cricketer of Nepal who has big potential. I think IPL is a global platform for cricketers, and he had played excellent game in his debut appearance there. He has a potential to go very high on the sport since the beginning of his career. We have always acknowledged it. Let’s hope he will give the same level of performance in upcoming matches. I wish him a bright future and hope that he achieves much more ahead.
Bipin Lama, 38
CEO of Sports Hive and Lounge, Chhauni
It was a proud moment in Nepal when he was auctioned by the Delhi Daredevils. And the way he played in the last three matches has proved that he is a brilliant player. However, he should be consistent in the bowling line. This was his debut season. So, no one had read his bowling style properly yet. I think he should keep himself prepared for the worst as well, which is what all great players do.
Om Karki, 28 Imadol
Sandeep has made football fans like me also to be stuck in front of the television set. Before that, I only watched football. He is quite young, but he performed very well in the IPL against the top players like Virat Kholi, AB de Villiers and others. Like his two previous matches, he performed well and took three wickets against Mumbai Indians. So, overall, he is a special and emerging cricketer of Nepal. Even the Australian former captain Michael Clarke has acknowledged his talent, who helped Sandeep nurture his bowling skills in Australia.
Saurav Pandey, 35
I am an avid cricket fan since the first world cup final of 1992 when Pakistan won against England. I was pleased and excited to see Sandeep playing against tough and best batsmen in the IPL. It was a big achievement for Nepali cricketers when he played along with experienced players like Amit Mishra, Gautam Gambhir, Trent Boult, Gleen Maxwell, and others. I think his zeal and hunger to learn new things made him a good bowler. The performance against Royal Challengers Bangalore, Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai were beyond expectation.
Niranjan Jung Thapa, 21
Of course I am happy. The 17-year-old from Nepal has played against some of the world’s best batsmen. He not only played well, but also picked five wickets in only three matches in his debut season. The economy was also commendable. It was just a trailer, we have to wait to see the full movie in upcoming days. I think it was like a test that be passed well and proved that he is a capable bowler. However, Sandeep will have to give consistency in performance as well as bring variation according to the field situation.
Bina Ale Magar, 21
Yes, I am so happy about the performance of a teenage hero of Nepal in the IPL. He bowled brilliantly in each game against tough players, which is a good sign of being world-class player. But I didn’t watch yesterday’s match against Mumbai Indian. I am sure he will be soon turning out as one of the top bowlers in the world. Now, after his stupendous performance, he will also be a role model for cricket fans and players. So, I am very optimistic about the future of cricket in Nepal as Sandeep has become a catalyst to uplift the sport to international standards.