Rohit Paudel: The Story of Nepal Cricket Team Captain

Sports have seen some unreal talents who’ve achieved greatness at a very young age. Some greats like a rookie Kobe Bryant and Lebron James dominating the NBA, just from the get go. Or a recent accomplishment, that had stunned the world, was when a 20 year old Carlos Alcaraz defeated the GOAT of Tennis Novak Djokovic to claim the Wimbledon title. It’s crazy what sports can enable you to do at such a tender age. Even a teenager can slay an established giant by their talent, skill, and determination. The story is the same for a 20 year old Nepalese Cricketer, Rohit Paudel, a young and flourishing talent from the scenic land of Nepal, trying to put Nepal on the map as one of the forces to be reckoned with in Asian Cricket. 

Rohit Paudel plays a cut shot with the ZAP bat in Hand

Credit: News24 Hindi

In this chapter of ZAP Athletes, let’s get into the life of Rohit Paudel, the young, charismatic and brightest talents and captain of the Nepal National Cricket Team.

The Need for a Hero: 

Nepal hasn’t always been a nation that has excelled at the sport. They have a very recent history in the game, and have also seen huge successes lately. And for such a team, you require the right mix of youth and experience who bring the correct blend of flair, talent and knowledge. Along with this, you need a leader, a captain, who inspires, who encourages and who lifts your team up from the hells of defeat and motivates you to give it your all on the pitch. Rohit Paudel, the two decade old prodigy has done exactly that. Born on September 2, 2002 in the Chitwan district of Nepal, he took to domestic Cricket circuit and the Nepal Cricket leagues by storm with his exceptional talent.

Rohit Paudel plays a Pull Shot with a ZAP Cricket Bat

Credit: ESPN Cricinfo

The Birth:

Rohit’s love affair with the sport began at a very young age when he started playing with a tennis ball in his hometown. His inspiration to play for his national team and lead them to greatness came after they made their maiden appearance in an ICC global event at the 2014 ICC World Twenty20 in Bangladesh. His talent shone like a bright star, and seeing this, his coaches at his academy and his family  encouraged him to fully pursue his dream. Dominating the domestic circuit, he had become too skilful to not be playing for his national team. He earned his first unofficial cap for Nepal in a first class game in the 2018 ICC World Cricket League Division Two tournament, which took place on February 8, 2018, aged a mere 16 years old

The Rise of the Hero:

Rohit Paudel batting with ZAP Cricket Bat in hand

Cricket: Firstpost

Soon, it was only a matter of time he made his official debut for the Nepal Men’s Cricket Team. The day was August 3, 2018, in Amstelveen, Netherlands when he played in his first ODI match against the Netherlands marking his debut for the Nepal Cricket Team. He became the fourth-youngest player to make his ODI debut at the age of 15 years and 335 days. His determination and skills were very evident in every innings he played. Imagine holding a record for being the youngest male player to score an international half-century. Rohit Paudel held this record until 2020. 

On July 29, 2018, he played his first Twenty20 match for his national team against the Marylebone Cricket Club in the MCC Tri-Nation Series of 2018. On January 31, 2019, he made his Nepal T20I debut against the United Arab Emirates.

Rohit Batting and Playing Style:

Rohit Paudel has a very timid and shy personality in front of the media, as that has earned him comparison with how MS Dhoni was on the field. A very cool, calm and composed figure, he shows all the true qualities a captain on the cricket pitch should have. Talking about his batting style, it is a beautiful combination of traditional shots and contemporary flare. He is a middle-order batsman with exceptional timing and footwork who can both anchor innings and pick up speed when needed. His playing style has helped Nepal win multiple cricket matches since his debut.

Rohit’s Impact on Nepal Cricket:

You can divide the Nepal Cricket team's success in cricket in two periods, before Rohit Paudel’s debut and after. His contribution to the team is invaluable to that level. At only 20 years old, he is already all-time leading scorer in ODIs and the first player from that country to reach 1000 runs in ODIs. Rohit Paudel’s runs and stats have been very important for Nepal in Crucial games. He was included in the national squad for the 2018 Asia Cup Qualifier competition. Later in the same year, with 161 runs in three games, he was the highest run scorer for his team during the 2018 ACC Under-19 Asia Cup. Rohit was selected for two major tournaments in quick succession. He impressed in his performances in the ACC Emerging Teams Asia Cup in Bangladesh. He was then named in the national team squad for the men's tournament at the 2019 South Asian Games. His crucial performances played a major part in helping his team win bronze in that tournament. In September 2020, he was rewarded for his good form by being awarded a central contract by the Cricket Association of Nepal

Rohit Paudel batting in the nets with his ZAP Cricket Bat

ZAP and the Hero within:

ZAP believes that there’s a hero within every person and in cricket, your cricket bat is just the way you channel your inner hero out. That’s what Rohit Paudel has done at such a young age. Becoming the captain of the Nepal team, he has become an inspiration to all the young players that dream to play for their team. They should all work hard, persevere and never stop believing in themselves to achieve greatness. And ZAP will always be there to cheer for you with our cricket bats and cricket gear that are made with love and affection, knowing that they will help anyone who uses them channel their inner hero out on the pitch and dominate the game. 

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