Chitwan Rhinos defeats Kat Queens Kathmandu to win the first edition of Women’s Champions League in Nepal

Chitwan Rhinos defeated Kat Queens Kathmandu to win the first edition of the Women’s Champions League in Nepal. The franchise-based tournament which was held for women cricketers, saw 5 teams competing with each other for the coveted title.

Team Chitwan Rhinos. Photo: Udipt Singh Chhetry / THT
Team Chitwan Rhinos. Photo: Udipt Singh Chhetry / THT

Women’s Champions League was a first of its kind women’s franchise tournament held in Nepal. It had 5 city-based teams participating in the league. It was the inaugural edition of the T20 tournament. The event was organized by Queens Event Management Pvt Ltd, the same company which organises the men’s Pokhara Premier League.

The league is the first step towards the revival of women’s cricket in the country. The players played in colorful kits and teams had their own anthems. The five teams were – Chitwan Rhinos, Biratangar Titans, Kat Queens Kathmandu, Lalitpur Falcons and Pokhara Paltan. While Falcons and Paltan crashed out of the tournament early, Rhinos and Queens made to the finals of one the highest prize giving women’s tournaments of the country.

The final match was held between Chitwan Rhinos and Kat Queens Kathmandu at the Tribhuvan University Stadium. Rhinos while batting first set a target of 113 for the Queens Kathmandu. Openers Kajal Shrestha and Kanchan Shrestha gave a good start to the side. They made 49 runs in 9 overs before both of them got out in a span of two balls. While Kajal made 21 runs in 28 balls, Kanchan hit 19 runs in her 26-ball stay. Ritu Kanoujiya, the former national captain and Suman Khatiwada then stitched a 35 run-partnership. Suman top-scored for her side with a 25-ball 29 knock. Captain Indu Barma and Pyari Chaudhary then contributed 26 runs to the team’s total. Rhinos finished on 112/4 after batting 20 overs.

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The Queens had a poor start and could not recover since. Apsari Begum made the most runs for her side. She scored 15 runs in 31 balls. Mamta Thapa and Ishwori Bist made 13 runs each. None of the other batters could score in double figures.

The Rhinos had a good day in bowling as well. It was Suman Khatiwada and Ritu Kanoujiya who took 3 wickets apiece to rip the Queen’s batting line-up.

Awards and recognitions

Chitwan Rhinos won over Kat Queens Kathmandu by 45 runs to win the inaugural title. Khatiwada received the player of the match award.

As promised, the winning team Chitwan Rhinos received the prize money of Rs 700,000 while the runners up Kat Queens Kathmandu got Rs 300,000.

Player of the tournament: Rubina Chhetry Belbashi (214 runs, 5 wickets) was awarded Rs 50,000 along with a TVS Scooter.

Best Batter: Kajal Shrestha (134 runs) earned 25,000 + Rs 250,000 worth cricket kits from Red Rock.

Best Bowler: Kabita Gautam (10 wickets) also earned Rs 25,000 + Rs 250,000 worth cricket kits from Red Rock.

Emerging Player: Ishwori Bist (6 wickets, 24 runs) got the prize money of Rs 15,000.

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