Police wins Ruslan cricket title

Published On: January 17, 2017 09:30 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Jan 17: Nepal Police Club clinched the title of the Second Ruslan Cup T20 cricket tournament on Friday defeating departmental rival Tribhuvan Army Club by four wickets in the final played at the TU grounds in Kirtipur. 

Being invited to bat first after losing the toss, Army scored 142/6 at close. In reply, Police made 148/6 with an over to spare and took home the winners' trophy along with a purse of Rs 300,000. Runner-up Army was rewarded with Rs 200,000 along with trophy, medals and certificates. 

Army received an early jolt after its in-form opener Sagar Pun was dismissed for just one run. The best batsman of the tournament was caught by Dilip Nath off Lalit Bhandari. 

However, the other opener Anil Kumar Mandal (15 runs 28 balls) and Naresh Budhayer (28 runs 25 balls) tried to get the team back on track. Middle order batsman Rajesh Pulami and captain Binod Bhandari came up with remarkable contributions for Army putting up 55-run stand for the fourth wicket before the former was sent to the pavilion.

Rajesh smashed 38 runs in his 21-ball knock which included four fences and a six. Binod scored 40 runs from 30 deliveries which included three boundaries and two sixes.  Sompal Kami remained unbeaten on 13 runs and Bikram Sob on two runs.

Police bowler Lalit Bhandari and Lalit Rajbanshi claimed two wickets each while Ram Naresh Giri and Manjeet Shrestha picked one wicket each. 

In the run chase, Police too had a shaky start losing three wickets with 32 runs on board though opener Dilip Nath contributed 24 runs. He hit four fences facing 18 balls.
However, the middle order batsmen came up with responsible knock to guide Police to victory. Number four batsman Dipendra Airee contributed an unbeaten 42 run for Police.

The highest scorer of the match hit four fences and a six in his 35-ball knock and later won the man-of-the-match award. 

Kushal Bhurtel was another key contributor for Police in the run chase scoring 34 runs off 20 balls. Similarly, skipper Manjeet Shrestha scored 15 runs and Yogendra Karki 11 runs. Siddhanta Lohani remained unbeaten on four runs. 

Army bowler Bikram Sob and Jitendra Mukhiya picked two wickets each while Avinash Karn bagged one. 

Army players Jitendra Mukhiya and Sagar Pun were declared the best bowler and batsmen respectively. Jitendra had claimed nine wickets in the four matches of the tournament while Sagar had scored 151 runs in as many matches remaining unbeaten in two of them. Kushal Bhurtel of Police took home the award for maximum sixes. He hit six sixes in two innings. Similarly, Police player Md Aarif Sheikh was given 'babaal catch award' for the best catch.

Rajesh Pulami of Army took home the award for the fastest half century and Shankar Rana of New Horizon Cricket Club (Butwal) got Ruslan Century Award for his century score. Surya Lama of host Ruslan KCTC won emerging player award. They were all rewarded with gift hampers. 

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