Lamichhane drafted in World XI squad to face West Indies

- Post Report, Kathmandu

May 17, 2018-

Nepal’s leg spin prodigy Sandeep Lamichhane has added another feather to his cap after the teen bowler was drafted into a World XI side set to clash against West Indies at the Lord’s for a charity Twenty20 International match on May 31.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) is holding the match to raise funds to redevelop the stadia in the Caribbean which were damaged due to hurricanes last year. Lamichhane’s inclusion in the star-studded World XI squad comes just four days after he made his debut in the Indian Premier League on May 12 playing against Royal Challengers Bangalore.

The leggie earned a widespread applaud after an impressive display picking up a wicket and conceding just 25 runs against a Bangalore side that boasted world cricket’s best batsmen Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers. Lamichhane was especially appreciated for the control and calmness he showed against the likes of Kohli and De Villiers.

Eoin Morgan will lead the World XI side that will include Pakistan’s flamboyant allrounder Shahid Afridi and Shoaib Malik, India’s Dinesh Karthik and Hardik Pandya, New Zealand’s Luke Ronchi and Mitchell McClenaghan, Bangladesh’s Tamim Iqbal, Sri Lanka’s Thisara Perera and Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan.

The Windies XI will have the likes off international stars Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Carlos Brathwaite, Marlon Samuels, Andre Russell and Samuel Badree.

Lamichhane felt hugely honoured to be a part of the World XI side. “I am privileged to have been chosen to be part of the ICC World XI against the Windies. It is an honour for the entire country and passionate followers of Nepal cricket, as well as an indicator that we are making our mark on the international game,” Lamichhane told the ICC.

It will be the second time that Lamichhane will be play at the Lord’s having previously represented Nepal for a 50-over match against Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) at the ‘Mecca’ of cricket in 2016. Lamichhane had taken 1-25 in the match that Nepal won by 43 runs. Nepal are also scheduled to play at the Lord’s in one-day Twenty20 series against MCC and the Netherlands on July 29.

For Lamichhane, another opportunity for him to play at the Lord’s is once again putting his country in global map through the game. “What can I say about Lord’s, it’s the home of cricket, it’s a complete history of cricket and a dream venue for any cricketer. I hope I will continue to get opportunities in future which, in turn, will help me improve my skills as well as my country to strengthen its position on the world cricket map,” he added.

After being introduced to Nepali cricket just three-year earlier, Lamichhane has undoubtedly taken huge stride since a breathtaking performance in the 2016 ICC U-19 World Cup in Bangladesh. Lamichhane had taken 16 wickets, including a hat-trick against Ireland in Bangladesh from where he hit global headlines dubbed as Nepali Shane Warne.

He then lined up with Australian World Cup winning captain Michael Clarke in the Hong Kong Twenty20 Blitz from where his career took a complete turn. Impressed by his bowling prowess, Clarke took Lamichhane to Australia to train in his academy and fielded him in the Australian Grade cricket for Western Suburbs. It is also believed that Lamichhane was picked up by Delhi Daredevils in the auction owing to the connection between Clarke and Daredevils coach Ricky Ponting. Lamichhane wants to make the most of the latest golden opportunity that he has been provided with.

“Training, sharing the dressing room and playing with some of the trend-setters, who we saw on television while growing up, is something I look forward to. This is an opportunity for me to learn and improve, and I am committed to cashing in on this,” Lamichhane was quoted as saying by ICC.

Published: 17-05-2018 08:27

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