KATHMANDU, Dec 27: Six different Lalitpur Patriots bowlers picked up a wicket each in their quest to bundle Rhinos out for 111 runs and win the eliminator by 27 runs. They have qualified for the second qualifier. Lalitpur will face Bhairahawa Gladiators tomorrow in a virtual semi-final. The winner of that match will tussle against Biratnagar Warriors in the final of EPL 2017 on 30th December.
Sandeep Lamichhane was the pick of the bowlers dismissing key batsmen Shakti Gauchan and Binod Bhandari in his spell. Lamichhane scalped three wickets. Sunny Patel, who also had a decent outing with the bat picked up two early wickets to give Rhinos an early upper-hand in the match. Rashid Khan and Pawan Sarraf also picked two wickets each. Similarly, Dinesh Bhandari, the Indian bowler, chipped in with a wicket.
Israullah top-scored for Rhinos scoring 25 runs from 22 deliveries that included two back to back sixes against Sandeep Lamichhane. A late cameo by Kishore Mahato combined with some poor fielding by Patriots allowed Rhinos to 111 despite being nine wickets down for 78 runs in the 17th over. Mahato scored 23 runs from 13 deliveries including three fours and a six.
Earlier, Indian batsman Sunny Patel’s late innings cameo has propelled Lalitpur Patriots to 138/5 in the 20 overs. Patel smashed two boundaries and three sixes in his 38 runs came from 26 deliveries and help Patriots recover from 76/5 in the 14th over at one stage.
Pokhara Rhinos bowlers Israrullah and Susan Bhari shared five wickets between them. Pakistan batsman Israr once again come well with the ball as he registered the bowling figures of 4-0-14-3.
Pokhara won the toss and elected to bowl first in the must-win match. Lalitpur skipper also expressed his desires to bowl first if had won the toss. Patriots opening batsman Jaykishan Kolsawala and Shankar Rana shared an opening partnership of 60 runs. Kolsawala was once again looking in good touch for his 28 runs which included three fours and a six. Similarly, Shankar Rana accumulated 43 deliveries for his 34 runs including five fours.
The winner of the eliminator will face Bhairahawa Gladiators tomorrow in the second qualifier match to vie a place in the final alongside Biratnagar Warriors which qualified this morning.