Thinley Namgay  

Twenty-six players picked from different clubs and schools across the country are competing in a Development Squad Women’s Cricket Series 2023 to qualify for the women’s national team.

The girls are divided into two teams, Bhutan A and B. In the game of 35 overs yesterday, team B made 147 runs with the fall of four wickets in 29.1 overs. However, team A was all out managing 114 runs in 27.2 overs.

Tshering Choden of team B and Ngawang Choden of team A shone during the match. Ngawang Choden smashed 64 runs with 10 4s from 68 balls. Tshering Choden contributed 54 runs from 74 balls.

In the opening match on February 6, team A won by six wickets. The team made 228/4 in 27.1 overs, but the opponent could make only 227/9 in 35 overs.  Organised by Bhutan Cricket, the three-match series will end tomorrow.

The tournament is also to make the players familiar with 35-over games. Usually, cricket in Bhutan follows a 20 overs or 50 overs format.

The two teams have also played in the recent Women’s T20 National Championship at the Gelephu international cricket ground.

Team B’s captain Dechen Wangmo said players show improvement in this tournament, especially in batting. “They are setting high targets now. I am confident that the new national squad will be competent. The under-19 players in the current teams are talented.”

Bhutan Cricket’s Chief Executive Officer Damber S Gurung said, “We have seen lots of talent in girls. We are trying to engage them with more matches. We still have time for preparation for the international tournament in July or August.”

He said the majority of players are students and they will continue with the training in their school after February 10.

Damber said the national men’s team is preparing for an upcoming tournament in Bangkok, and the Gelephu cricket ground is occupied.