EIGHT CRICKETERS from Nepal have been recommended for the 2021 Indian Premier League draft according to the Cricket Association of Nepal.
The most notable of the list is arguably 20-year-old spinner Sandeep Lamichhane, who was released after three seasons with the Delhi Capitals and is now free to join any franchise.
Joining Mr Lamichhane are Dipendra Singh Aiyer, Binod Bhandari, Karan KC, Sompal Kami, Sharad Vesawkar, Abinash Bohara and Kushal Malla.
Mr Aiyer is a 20-year-old all-rounder, Mr Bhandari is a 30-year-old wicketkeeper whose domestic career has been restricted to Nepal, save for a short spell in Sri Lanka with Kalutara, Mr KC is a 29-year-old all-rounder who has also played for several sides in Nepal, Mr Kami is a 25-year-old fast bowler who played alongside Mr Bhandari in Sri Lanka and has recently side for Maratha Arabians in the UAE’s 10-over league, Mr Vesawkar is a 32-year-old UAE born batsmen who has never played domestically outside of Nepal, Mr Bohara is a 23-year-old bowler who has spent his entire career with the Armed Police Forces Club whilst Mr Malla is a 16-year-old all-rounder.
The auction will take place in Chennai on February 18.
Cricket in Nepal has seen rapid development in the last decade, with the side qualifying for their first major ICC tournament in 2014 with the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh.
This is so far the only major ICC tournament they have qualified and they failed to get out of the group stages.
They shared the 2012 ACC Trophy with the UAE.
Though typically smaller nations have their national sides filled with players from Test-playing nations who have migrated overseas during adulthood, the Nepal side are somewhat of an anomaly, being overwhelmingly homegrown.
All players contracted with the national board have come through Nepali academies.
Mr Lamicchane is the most notable, he actually made his T20i debut not for Nepal, but for a World XI against the West Indies.
He has also played franchise cricket in the West Indies, Afghanistan, Australia and Pakistan.
The left armed spinner has a bowling average of 14.55 in T20i with 34 wickets from 456 bowls bowled.