Cricket

ICC T20 WC 2024: Sandeep Lamichhane Lands In West Indies, Set To Join Nepal Squad Soon

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has not yet released any statement regarding Sandeep Lamichhane's inclusion in the Nepal squad. Despite this, Lamichhane arrived in St. Vincent on June 9 and announced on social media that he would be joining Nepal's national team "for the last two matches"

sandeep lamichhane twitter X @Sandeep25
The Cricket Association Of Nepal announced on 30 May that Sandeep Lamichhane was going to miss the tournament. Photo: X/ @Sandeep25
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Nepal's standout cricketer Sandeep Lamichhane has arrived in the West Indies to participate in Nepal's final two group-stage matches set to take place in Kingstown, St. Vincent on June 15 and 17, 2024. (Full Coverage | More Cricket News)

According to reports from ESPNcricinfo, the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) had requested the ICC to allow Lamichhane to be included as a late entry, and the governing body had agreed to add him to the current Nepal squad. Lamichhane does not require a visa for St. Vincent.

Lamichhane was not part of the 15-member squad which was listed on the ICC website because he was unable to get a visa from the USA. All boards were allowed to make changes to their T20 World Cup 2024 squads by May 25, but when Lamichhane didn't get a US visa even on the second attempt, CAN announced on 30 May that Lamichhane was going to miss the tournament.

CAN President Chatur Bahadur Chand told on Monday that the board had originally submitted 14 names on 24 May to ICC to allow Lamichhane's late addition. However, according to ESPNcricinfo, the Nepal squad already has 15 members in the USA and Lamichhane's inclusion is only possible as someone's replacement and for that, they will need approval from the ICC's Event Technical Committee.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has not yet released any statement regarding Lamichhane's inclusion in the Nepal squad. Despite this, he arrived in St. Vincent on June 9 and announced on social media that he would be joining Nepal's national team "for the last two matches".

Barely a couple of hours before that, CAN also stated on their social media, announcing Lamichhane's inclusion in the squad. According to Chand, the ICC had granted permission for Lamichhane to participate in the last two matches.

"We, along with the Nepal government, had tried hard to secure a US visa for Lamichhane but that didn't work out," Chand said. "We had already requested the ICC to give an allowance for him to be added to the World Cup squad even as a late entry. The ICC has now allowed Lamichhane to be added for the last two matches".

The Nepal squad is currently in Lauderhill, USA, where they are scheduled to play their second league stage match against Sri Lanka on 12 June. Nepal lost their opening match against the Netherlands by six wickets and will face South Africa and Bangladesh on 15 and 17 June, respectively, in St. Vincent.

Lamichhane's applications for a US visa were denied twice last month, despite interventions from the Nepal government. He was arrested in October 2022 on accusations of raping an 18-year-old woman. At that time, he was immediately suspended by the CAN.

After being found guilty in a trial in January 2024, he was later acquitted on appeal by the Patan High Court in May due to "a lack of evidence." This allowed him to resume playing cricket immediately. There were plans to send him to the USA and the Caribbean for the T20 World Cup, but his US visa was denied.

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