Some years ago, one night I was laying in my bed. I failed to get asleep, then my mind got full of imagination. Belonging to associates cricketing nation, I imagined my nation taking part in a big tournament where cricketing giants like India and Pakistan are fighting along with us for one common trophy. My nation beat cricketing powerhouse likes of India and Pakistan to make it to the final. I was sitting right in front of my television screen to testify the winning moment. I fist, put both my hands up straight, punched in the air while my nation was lifting the trophy. As soon as I got out from the imagination, I wonder what rubbish I have imagined and I started to laugh at myself. Now, right after few years, my nations are in such position from where my impossible imagination could be obtainable.
My imagination which was hidden in the locked room see one small hole to get out and turn it into reality.
This made me believe that virtually nothing is impossible in this world if you just put your mind to it and maintain a positive attitude as Nepal and Afghanistan are just two tough step away from ACC Youth Asia Cup 2017 title. Above “I” represent the many cricket loving dreamer from Nepal and Afghanistan. Nepal U19 and Afghanistan U19 will face each other in the second semi-final of ACC U19 youth Asia Cup 2017 on November 17 in Kinrara Oval ground, Malaysia. Afghanistan tops the group B chart while Nepal finished on the second spot of group A to fixed they’re met with each other. Both of team were not expected to be where they are now especially Nepal. But they turn around the prediction and make it to the semi-final of Youth Asia Cup ahead of defending champions India and Sri Lanka. Both of team were exceptional throughout the tournament.
Afghanistan have shown in their first game vs Pakistan itself that for what they are participating in this tournament where Nepal although started their tournament with a loss against Bangladesh but they send message to other teams that this time they aren’t only participating, they will fight till the end and make you leaned all the way for a win. The journey of either of the team is totally a source of inspiration to other associate nations. This will surely give a big slap to ICC decision to decrease the number of participating nation in their global events. A player from nations is leaving their notch in tournament stats too as Afghanistan’s destructive batsman Darwish Abdul Rasool is in the third spot of highest run-getter of the tournament with his 161 runs.
Similarly, Afghanistan bowler Majeeb Rahman is in the second spot of highest wicket-taker of the tournament with his nine wickets where Nepalese spin sensational Sandeep Lamichhane ensured his name in the chart with eight wickets. Afghanistan and Nepal have played seven matches against each other in Under-19 level till now. Afghanistan won four out of seven matches where Nepal succeed to pull a victory on three occasions. Afghanistan is a bit ahead than Nepal, both on paper and on-field performance. But they can never underestimate Nepal, who are crossing the boundary of every prediction. It is expected to be the battle of Afghanistan batting vs Nepal bowling in Kinrara Oval, which assists the spinner. Both of the teams have a big fan following, so it is very common to have fans saga and banter on social media. They have very devoted and enthusiastic fans so both of their fans want their side to win this match at any cost hence, pressure factor is also simply added in this encounter. Before this very significant encounter, we would like to look at some key players from both of teams who tends to turn around the outcome of this match.
- Mujeeb UR Rahman:- This 17 years spinner have already won the heart of many cricket pundits. He is in excellent form throughout this tournament as he is on the second spot of leading wicket taker of the tournament with nine wickets. His heroic spell of (10-23-6) helped Afghanistan restricted Pakistan on the below-par score of 57 runs to register a famous win in the very first match of Youth Asia Cup. His Ability to spin the ball, the clear legality of the bowling action, unorthodox and effective bowling style will be enough to recognize him as the promising spinner and long run trump card for Afghanistan. Nepalese batsman must give respect to this young talent and they should play passionate cricket in order to get rid of him.
- Sandeep Lamichhane:- Seriously no words are left in our dictionary to describe this talented lad. whether its senior-level cricket or junior level, he always used to be the player to watch out for. He is listed in the third spot of leading wicket taker of the tournament with eight wickets in his pocket. His ability to drift the ball inside to the right-hander makes a batsman difficult to handle him. Big match, toughest platform, and its tailor-made situation for a big game player like Sandeep Lamichhane.
- Dipendra Singh Airee:- Nepal U19 skipper and inform the player, Airee will surely look to utilize this platform and give out his best on Friday against tough opponents like Afghanistan. His contribution in this tournament his actually magnificent. He leads his team from the front and leads them on the perfect way to make it to semis. His 88 runs and 4 wickets against India U19 will always be written in big block letter in Nepal’s cricketing history. The talent which was recognized by Paras Khadka long ago has started to perform now.
- Darwish Abdul Rasool:- Destructive opening batsman, Darwish will be the Afghanistan’s trump card against Nepal on Friday. He is in supreme form throughout this tournament as he is the third place of the chart of leading run scorer with his 161 runs which include a blistering century against UAE. Nepalese bowlers must send him back as quickly as possible if they want to restrict Afghanistan to the chaseable total.