Records are made to break: for there are some records that could not be broken by any mean – like the first bowler to reach 50 wickets in the national league cricket and that record will always stay with Raju Basnet.

Raju, representing Region No 3 Kathmandu since the inception of the region based national league back in 2001, became the first bowler to claim 50 wickets when he returned with career best 5/15 against Region No 2 Birgunj at the TU Cricket Ground on Sunday.

Raju, 29, is also the cricketer who has played more national league matches than anybody else till the date. In 24 matches spreading over seven years, Raju bowled 191 overs for the landmark taking wickets at an average of 12.7.

Against Birgunj, he was at his best taking five wickets haul for the first time and wrecking the middle-order that included among other national captain Binod Das, who is trailing him by two wickets, in the leading wicket taker list.

“It’s a great achievement for a bowler,” Roy Dias, Nepal’s coach who watched him take five wickets giving away just 15 runs in 10 overs today, commented. “It’s great because there are not much domestic matches and that he is a spinner who gets to bowl late in the innings.”

The achievement is also great for the left-arm bowler because there have been complaints about him for not being fit enough largely targeted to his belly.

“I feel this is the result of my contribution on the field,” Raju said after the match. “I always played for victory and I would like to thank all my teammates since 2001 who had supported me to reach this landmark.”

Kathmandu has never won the national league and had been in the finals thrice – one of which he missed due to injury. “Win and loss is part of the game,” he said adding that his team had a chance to fulfill that vacant this year.

Since 1997, when he went to Hong Kong for the U-19 ACC, he had been around in cricket and had been part of national teams on and off. He had played 11 U-19 internationals and three senior internationals – taking two and seven wickets respectively.

Top Wicket Takers in National League

Player Team Matches Wickets
Raju Basnet Kathmandu 24 50
Binod das Birgunj 22 48
Raj Kumar Pradhan Biratnagar 20 45
Mehboob Alam Biratnagar 22 39
Shakti Gauchan Bhairahawa 20 38

Raju Basnet’s Performance
Event by Event

Edition/Year Matches Wickets
First / 2002 4 5
Second / 2003 3 8
Third / 2004 4 11
Fourth / 2004 5 9
Fifth / 2006 2 6
Sixth / 2007 4 6
Seventh / 2008* 1 5