Netherlands won the first match © Getty Images
Netherlands won the first match in a closely fought battle © Getty Images

After a thrilling first match which Netherlands won by 18 runs, Nepal would be hoping for a reversal in the second Twenty20 International (T20I) at Rotterdam. Stephen Myburgh and Paras Khadka were the stars for their respective sides, and will look to better their performances this time around. ALSO READ: Nepal need to play aggressive cricket in order to be successful

Netherlands rode on Myburgh’s unbeaten 60-ball 67 on what proved to be a tough pitch to bat on. At 71 for 5 in the 12th over, it seemed like Netherlands would meander to a sub-par total, but Myburgh found excellent support in Michael Rippon (25*). The duo ensured that Netherlands got to a defendable 134 for 5. ALSO READ: Stephan Myburgh, bowlers give Netherlands hard-fought win over Nepal

Nepal left-arm pacer Avinash Karn had an impressive debut, going wicketless but conceding only 18 in his four overs. Basant Regmi took 2 for 24, while KC Karan managed 1 for 32.

In response, Nepal were off to a decent start but frequent wickets kept them on the back foot. Nepal’s iconic leader Khadka stood tall amid the ruins with an unbeaten 45, but he received no support from the other batsmen.

For the Netherlands, Ahsan Malik was the star with 3 for 23, while Timm van der Gugten took 2 for 23. As many as eight bowlers were used, but it ultimately proved effective since Netherlands won by 18 runs.

Nepal have a lot of potential in their side. Barring Khadka they also have the likes of Subash Khakurel, Gyanendra Malla, and Sagar Pun who can contribute with the bat, while Basant Regmi, Sompal Kami, KC Karan, Avinash Karn, and Shakti Gauchan will look to dominate with the ball.

On the whole, Netherlands remain favourites given momentum and home conditions, but Nepal have a history of bringing their A-Game in tough conditions.

Squads:

Netherlands: Peter Borren (c) , Tobais Visee (wk), Rahil Ahmed, Wesley Barresi, Mudassar Bukhari, Ben Cooper, Ahsan Malik, Stephen Myburgh, Max O’Dowd, Michael Rippon, Pieter Seelaar, Michael Swart, Timm van der Gugten, Paul van Meekeren, Thijs van Schelven.

Nepal: Paras Khadka (c), Subash Khakurel (wk), Pradeep Airee, Binod Bhandari, Shakti Gauchan, KC Karan, Siddhant Lohani, Rajesh Magar, Gyanendra Malla, Anil Mandal, Jitendra Mukhiya, Basant Regmi, Sagar Pun, Sompal Kami, Sharad Vesawkar.

TIME: 20.30 IST | 15.00 GMT

(Shiamak Unwalla, a reporter with CricketCountry, is a self-confessed Sci-Fi geek who loves cricket more than cricketers. His Twitter handle is @ShiamakUnwalla)