Nepal has entered into the semifinals of 4th ACC Trophy being held in Singapore. Though the journey up to here was much expected by all of us, now every one out here would be anxiously waiting to see how Nepal would proceed further. Especially, after awesome performance of U-19 Team in Youth World Cup in New Zealand last year, the cricket fans are more hopeful.

People are still not satisfied with the performance of Nepalese senior team so far in the tournament and once again every one is talking about batting as a weak link of Nepal. However 80 runs and 60 runs by Dipendra Chaudhary and Mehboob Alam in the last game against Kuwait have given some sort of relief here. And these performances also have probably eased some pressure from Mr. Dias and his team.

So far Nepal’s batting had not clicked to its full potential except in the last match against Kuwait. Non of our top order batsmen has scored consistently, given the fact that three teams, Oman, Kuwait and Qatar are pretty new to international cricket. Only Sakti had been successful with bat with one fifty, 38 and 36. Most worrying thing for Nepalese batting is the failure of Dipendra Chaudhary and Raju Khadka who are supposed to be the best batsmen in the team. Apart from these two, Paresh and Bardan also didn’t do well either.

So, what exactly lacking in the Nepalese batting then? Is it technique? Temperament? Ability to play long innings? Lack of exposure? And the question can go on and on and on. Some of us may agree to any of these. But in my view, Nepalese batsmen have all these with them and now we should stop making excuses that we have a weak batting. Because if we talk about technique, we have batsmen like Dipendra, Paresh and Sakti who are technically very sound. If we talk about temperament these all have scored 50s and 100s quite of few times both in domestic and international fixtures. If we talk about exposures almost every player in the team has played either U-19 or senior level international tournament. If we talk about long inning, if one can play it once he also can repeat it again and again. If we talk about stronger opponent then if Binod and Parash can play innings of 32 and 36 against the same opponent why can’t our top order batsmen? Therefore it is high time for every Nepalese batsman to start believing on them and play with courage and conviction.

Since we are preparing ourselves for 2007 World Cup, we can not make excuses like these. In my view if anything lacking in Nepalese batsmen, that is commitment towards game and strong determination. If Nepal want to go further in the tournament it has to show its strong determination through disciplined and planned batting in the semis.

In the batting side Dipendra would be key for Nepal and he has to lead from the front to steer the team to the final. He is a kind of batsman who can turn any match in Nepal’s favor from any condition. On his day, he has the ability to steer the team to the victory single-handedly. More over he is well experienced with perfect batting technique and aggression. He is innovative and takes calculative risk as and when required in the one-day game. He can really make any opponent dance on his own tune. Most importantly he has the ability of making his partner play as he want.

At last, I don’t see any reason why Nepal can not beat Malaysia in the semis as long as it keeps its basics right. All the best Nepalese Team!