March 20, 2023
KATHMANDU – Nepal has stepped up preparations for hosting the ACC Premier Cup, a gateway to the 2023 Asia Cup, proposed to be held in April, in Kathmandu.
According to Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN), the 10-team tournament will be held at TU Ground Kirtipur and the Mulpani Ground.
“We are in the last phase of discussions with the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) and they have asked us to upgrade some basic facilities at Mulpani ground required to host the international event,” said CAN acting secretary Durga Raj Pathak. “The ACC team was in Nepal two weeks ago to inspect the facilities of Nepal and other requirements to host an event of such stature,” said Pathak.
“We are now working to upgrade some of our facilities at the Mulpani ground. The exact date will be finalised in a few days. We have proposed April 18 to May 1,” added Pathak.
The participating teams of the Premier Cup have been divided into two groups. Group ‘A’ consists of Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), apart from hosts Nepal. Group ‘B’ includes Bahrain, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Oman and Singapore.
The participating teams have been divided into two groups. Group ‘A’ consists of Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, apart from hosts Nepal. Group ‘B’ includes Bahrain, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Oman and Singapore. The winners and runners up from each group will make it to the semi-finals.
The winner of the 10-team tournament will qualify for the Asia Cup which will feature global cricket giant India, besides Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan.
“It’s an opportunity for us to rub shoulders with cricket’s giants, should we win the title. We are in a winning momentum having won 11 of the 12 matches of the recently played World Cup League 2 matches. I am very much optimistic of a good outcome in the tournament,” said Pathak.
The tournament champions will join India and Pakistan in Group ‘A’ of the Asia Cup, while Group ‘B’ comprises Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.