Nepal 🇳🇵 recently made a dramatic entry into the One Day International circuit, having played their first ever ODI match and series against The Netherlands. It’s a historic moment for any country to gain ICC status in any form of the game, and this was no different for Nepal, who were preparing for this day for months, full of hope and enthusiasm. I’m glad to say that this Asian country, relatively new to the cricketing world, didn’t disappoint on debut.
They got their ODI status in March this year and eventually began their journey with a 2-match ODI series against Netherlands in Amstelveen, on 1st August 2018. Every member of this squad would’ve been proud to be a part of such a historic moment for Nepal, and one of them was Lalit Singh Bhandari 🇳🇵, a left-arm pacer who is a vital member of this squad. He was kind enough to take some time out to talk about this historic moment for Nepal, in an exclusive interview with Read Scoops. Keep reading for more…
Lalit Singh Bhandari social profiles 🌐:
LALIT BHANDARI’s Exclusive Interview With Read Scoops:
Nepal played brilliantly on ODI debut, but unfortunately, they weren’t able to kick on and complete the win. However, they emerged victorious in a thrilling 2nd ODI, ultimately winning by 1 run. Bhandari made his debut in this game and was one of the main contributors with his spell of 2/43. “Getting our ODI status means a lot to us, like a dream come true. It is only possible due to all our players’ hard work and sacrifices,” Bhandari told Read Scoops, about what Nepal’s ODI status meant to the squad.
Q1. What was the experience being a part of the country’s first ever ODI series and ODI victory?
“It means a lot to me personally, as a Nepal cricketer. I can’t express my feelings. It really means a lot to me and is a great achievement for all Nepalese cricketers. Obviously, it was a great experience and I feel so lucky to be a part of this historic ODI team. Every player in the squad was so excited, especially in the dressing room before the 1st ODI game. We were all just waiting for the match to start.”
“Yes, obviously. We are not going to stay satisfied with just the ODI status, and we’re looking forward to getting our Test status as well. We are aiming to get Test status within the next 6-8 years. To do this, we will have to make the levels of cricket in Nepal more challenging and keep putting in more hard work.”
Q3. What has been the highlight moment of your career? Any most memorable spell or match?
“There have been some really good days, the best moment being when we got ODI status followed by when I made my ODI debut for Nepal. Another most memorable moment for me was when I was awarded the Most Valuable Player Award in DPL 2 (Dhangadhi Premier League). However, I would say that there still hasn’t been a most special highlight moment of my career, but I’m waiting to get better and waiting for better moments to come.”
The 22-year old pacer played for Dhangadhi Team Chauraha is the DPL 2 tournament, which is one of Nepal’s biggest domestic cricket tournaments. He picked up 14 wickets in 7 games in that season, including a best of 4/37, and that’s why he was awarded the Most Valuable Player Award. Playing alongside him was Rohan Mustafa, captain of the UAE cricket team, and Bhandari has proved on countless occasions, that he is one to watch out for in the future.
Q4. What is your ultimate goal as a cricketer?
“My ultimate cricketing career goal is same like what it is for most budding cricketers. I wish to play Test cricket for Nepal, while also one day representing the country in an ICC 50-over World Cup tournament, against some of the best players in the world.”
Q5. Your cricketing idol or role model?
“Usually, I’ve idolized and followed many left-arm pacers like Trent Boult, Zaheer Khan, Mohammad Amir, but my main idol and role model will always be Wasim Akram. I haven’t seen Wasim Akram playing in matches, but I used to regularly follow his bowling and learn from him through YouTube videos.”
Q6. Any upcoming cricketers from Nepal that we should watch out for?
“There are a lot of young talented players that the cricketing world should watch out for. Many of our young guns like Sandeep Lamichhane, Dipendra Airee, 15-year old Rohit Poudel and others are future stars.”
Read Scoops also asked Bhandari if he had any message for young and aspiring cricketers and sportsmen from around the world. He replied saying, “If you want to achieve something special in your life, you may have to sacrifice many of your favourite things and you will always have to keep working harder, in order to be successful.” On a parting note, he once again expressed his intent on playing for Nepal in a World Cup tournament someday.
On behalf of the entire team at Read Scoops, I would like to take the opportunity to thank Lalit Singh Bhandari for talking to us and giving us some insights into what the atmosphere in the camp was when Nepal made its ODI debut. I would also like to wish him the best of luck for his career, and hope he achieves his dream of playing for Nepal in an ICC World Cup tournament.