August 11, 2017 12:51 PM NPT
Sandeep Lamichhane, the captain of the Nepali team in the Under-19 ICC World Cup Asian Qualifiers, 2017, recently went to Australia on an invitation of Aussie Legend Michael Clarke to play for the Sydney based Western Suburbs District Cricket Club. At 16, this is probably the biggest achievement for a cricketer. For Lamichhane, the success is simply the fruit of his labor.
Lamichhane confesses that he had always been interested in cricket. “I grew up watching cricket matches on TV, and even on my phone,” he says. He started his training at the age of seven at the Cricket Association of Chitwan’s Academy. In 2016, he wore the national jersey of Nepal for the first time at the ICC World Cricket League Championship against Namibia.
Hard working Sandeep likes everything about cricket. Not only the matches but he also enjoys the harsh training every day. “Training is the hardest part of all sports. Yet, I prefer training in scorching sun rather than spending my time at a movie theater,” he says adding that though practice is rigorous and it doesn’t leave him with much time for anything else he wouldn’t have it any other way. Challenging his teammates in bowling the fastest ball is his favorite part of training.
But Lamichhane also talks about how success comes with its fair share of negativity too. “When you are good at something, it’s quite common for your rivals to try to get you to stumble and fall. Many bitter discouraging words have been thrown my way and that is sometimes disheartening,” he explains adding that he doesn’t and won’t let that stop him from doing the best he can while out on the field.
Apart from cricket, Sandeep loves to travel and hang out with his friends whenever he can. “I am also a music lover and there’s always a tune playing wherever I am,” says Lamichanne. He says Shane Warne, Sachin Tendulkar, and Paras Khadka are his idols and wonders how it would feel to be able to share a pitch with them.
“You have to aim high to achieve great success,” says the 16-year-old who has made it further at this young age than he ever thought he would. But there is a long way for him to map out and, he says, every match is like an empty notebook for him where the pitch is the paper and the bat and ball are pens with which he creates a new story every single time he steps on the field.