WCL Div IV on astro-turf: a setback for Nepal

The International Cricket Council (ICC) decision to conduct the Pepsi World Cricket League Division IV on the artificial turf in Italy is likely to hit Nepal hard.

Although, major events are held on natural turf, the event from August 14 to 21 will be held on the astro-turf as the hosts do not have the natural turfs. “This is shocking,” Binaya Raj Pandey, the president of Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN), said.

Nepali players have not played on astro-turf. “We do not play regularly in astro-turf. We do have such pitch but we are using them only for practice matches,” added Pandey. “Only Middle East nations use astro-turf in Asia.”

Despite the tradition of playing major tournaments in turf, ICC also has the provision of playing in astro-turf. “We could have complained about it if it was the first time, but ICC had conducted Division III and few other tournaments in astro-turf. Now, we are requesting ICC for training in countries with astro-turf facilities,” said Pandey.

Following the ICC decision, Nepal have to revise all their training and practice schedules for the tournament. Nepali team has started practicing in astro-turf at the TU Cricket Ground since the last three days.

Nepal are also revising their foreign tours schedule before the tournament. CAN President Pandey said that Nepal will tour Sri Lanka but other countries have not yet been fixed. He claimed every participating nation would face difficulties in astro-turf.

The ICC decision has surprised coach Roy Luke Dias and captain Paras Khadka. “We have expected bounce and grace in Italian pitches but now have started practicing in astro-turf,” said Dias. “However, as we got the information two months prior to the tournament, we can heave a sigh of relief.”

“As I have played in the Netherlands four years ago, I understand that fast bowlers use rubber shoes instead of spikes, and our players are likely to find it strange,” said Dias.

Nepal, who have been performing well relying on their spinners on previous occasions, will certainly not be able to bank on them this time. However, captain Khadka demanded calm and balanced performance from the players and said, “If we maintain our cool, the astro-turf will not affect our performance”.

“Experienced player like Binod Das and Dipendra Chaudhary have played a few matches in astro-turf in Canada in 2001. Their experience will count in Italy,” said Khadka.

Nepal, Italy, the US, Cayman Islands, Tanzania and Argentina are participating in the Pepsi World Cricket League Division-4. Nepal and the US had booked their Division-4 berths after finishing in the top two positions of the Division -5 tournament held in Kathmandu last February.

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8 Responses

  1. raj says:

    if the WCL iv will be played on a artificial turf, nepal should focus on its fast bowler rather than spinner…but its really tough for nepal to completely rely on their fast bowler instead of spinners who have been performing very well in recent nepal’s victory… so nepal should have to set proper strategy and more practices in artificial turf…go nepal go..we can do every thing and our aim is to move towards WCL III…..and finally WC 2015…still two month is remaining its not too short time for preparation…

    • Ben Simkhada says:

      WCL was meant to be way forward in cricket. ICC should have only allowed to play matches in natural pitched at this level. This will definately not benefit cricket.

  2. dineshpun says:

    hey, its good tht ICC announced earlier about the pitch to be played in WCL div IV. Its still some time to prepare for that tournament so i am fully hopefull that nepalese player mentain their skills in such pitches.
    @BIKASH; m from butwal and i am a student. you are exactly right that i m a die hard fan of nepali Cricket.

  3. dineshpun says:

    All nepalese players have full potential to adopt in any ground n pitches. Thts why all of nepalese cricketers and fans don’t worry and believe yourself that our boys can do it. Wish you all the very best for your better peformance in WCL division IV. GUDLUCK

  4. Arun says:

    Shocking! Cricket at this level on astro-turf? ICC should’nt have allowed a nation without natural turfs to host such an important event. Nepal now needs to work really hard. I had heard that Nepal is very soon, maybe this week playing 3 ODIs with a team from Delhi. Is that true? If true, is it a high profile team or just a group of indians who know how to play cricket?

  5. govinda adhikari says:

    Bad news for nepali team. I am surprise that this kind of tournament is going to play on astro-turf. this is not good for our national team. they didnot have more experience. Now selectors should select 5 pace bowler for div-4. cap. paras need to use 4 pace each match. i heard that pace bowler is perfect than spinner on astro-turf .

  6. Ashok shah says:

    We’ve got still two months for preparation. Nepal has got good cricketing heart and experience. Facilities are the another major factor that nepalese cricketers are facing. Anyways by focusing on step by step matches can achieve the target. Nepal can do it.

    GO ———————-NEPAL———————–GO

  7. dineshpun says:

    whts going on to our players. As i heard that CAN is taking action over Basanta Regmi for quarrelling with other players during practice session. Please stop showing your stardom n arrogant nature with your own team mates like our politicians. We all see that our politics is totally unsuccessfull in the world because they can not co-operate with others, they can not support others’ openion n viws. If our national players follows the same path that our politicians are walking then there is no way to reach in the world cup. I know that Basanta Regmi is a good player as well as all rounder but what had happen to him to raise his hand to other guys. All the players must be in unity to play properly with the oponents other wise team can’t go upward.
    CAN must charge over the players who commits any kind of guiltiness in the team and another thing that all players must be co-operative n frendly with other mates not that arrogant natured.