Foreign Minister Jaishankar Extends India’s Hospitality: Offers Nepal Cricket Team ‘Home Ground’ in India

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    In an exciting turn of events, Nepal Cricket Team’s captain, Rohit Paudel, revealed a significant announcement made by India’s External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar, during his recent high-profile visit to Nepal. The minister assured the Nepali cricketers that they would have the privilege of considering an Indian cricket ground as their ‘home ground.’ This promising news serves as a major boost for enthusiastic Nepal cricket fans, sparking hopes for a remarkable improvement in the team’s performance.

    FILE PHOTO: Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar listens during a press conference of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) foreign ministers in Melbourne, Australia, February 11, 2022. REUTERS/Sandra Sanders
    1. Is Nepal playing in the T20 World Cup?

      Nepal has successfully secured a spot in the upcoming T20 World Cup, set to unfold in the USA and West Indies.

    Jaishankar’s Promise: Nepal Cricket Team Gains Home Advantage in India

    During his recent visit to Kathmandu on January 4th and 5th, 2024, India’s External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar, not only co-chaired the 7th meeting of the India-Nepal Joint Commission but also took the initiative to meet the Nepali cricket team. The visit, prompted by an invitation from Nepal’s Foreign Minister, N.P. Saud, turned out to be more than just diplomatic discussions.

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    Jaishankar, in response to Nepali officials’ request, assured them of all possible cooperation in elevating the overall standard of Nepali cricket. The officials had specifically sought support for the construction of a cricket stadium adhering to international standards.

    Jaishankar, in a gesture that thrilled the Nepali cricketers, pledged to provide them with a home ground in India. Capturing the moment, he shared snapshots of the meeting, showcasing the camaraderie between the minister and the cricket team.

    In a social media post on platform X, Jaishankar shared, “Congratulated them on qualifying for the T20 World Cup. Assured them of India’s support in their preparations. Underlined our commitment to the growth of cricket in Nepal.”

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    Nepal’s cricket captain, Rohit Paudel, expressed his delight, stating, “It was a pleasure to meet him because he himself called us. He was very happy to meet us. He congratulated us on being selected for the World Cup. And he talked about what support we can get from the BCCI in the coming days.

    Jaishankar’s proactive approach and the promise of a home ground echoed the success story of Afghanistan in cricket. Paudel remarked, “He said it before we said anything. I think BCCI has a big role in the progress Afghanistan has made in cricket in ten years. They gave Afghanistan a home ground.

    Discussing the potential impact of this proposal, Rohit emphasized, “It makes a big impact. You get to play in different conditions there. There are different wickets. It’s a big advantage to play with a team there.

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    HARARE, ZIMBABWE – JUNE 14: Rohit Paudel of Nepal poses for a photograph prior to the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Qualifiers on June 14, 2023 in Harare, Zimbabwe. (Photo by Johan Rynners-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)


    Nepal Cricket Team Star Sandeep Lamichhane Convicted of Rape

    In a shocking turn of events, former captain of Nepal’s national cricket team, Sandeep Lamichhane, was convicted of rape on 29th December 2023. The Kathmandu District Court, under the jurisdiction of Judge Shishir Raj Dhakal, delivered the verdict following the conclusion of final hearings that spanned several days.

    The court not only convicted Lamichhane of rape but also determined that the victim was not a minor at the time of the incident. The next hearing is slated to decide the jail term for the cricketer.

    Lamichhane, who had been arrested in connection with the alleged rape in a Kathmandu hotel room in August 2022, was granted bail in January 2023 by a Nepal court. The Patan High Court, in a subsequent decision, released him on bail of Rs 2 million and imposed travel restrictions until the final verdict.

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    MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 04: Sandeep Lamichhane of the Stars celebrates after dismissing Tom Cooper of the Renegades during the Big Bash League match between the Melbourne Stars and the Melbourne Renegades at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on January 04, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Daniel Pockett/Getty Images)

    The controversy surrounding Lamichhane took an international turn in February 2023 when the Scotland cricket team players refused to shake his hands after losing to Nepal. This silent protest was a reaction to Lamichhane’s continued participation in the ICC’s Cricket World Cup League 2 series despite the ongoing legal proceedings. The 23-year-old had been informed of the protest in advance.

    Lamichhane, recognized as the first cricketer from Nepal to play in the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2018, had gained fame in various T20 leagues globally. His achievements include holding the record for the world’s second-fastest bowler to capture 50 ODI wickets and the third-fastest to reach 50 T20I wickets.

    Amidst these accolades, Lamichhane’s career faces a significant setback with the recent conviction, raising questions about the impact on his image and future in cricket. Sandeep Lamichhane’s last international appearance was in August of the current year against Kenya in a T20I encounter.

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