The Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) will host the Asian Cricket Council's U-19 Cup in Kathmandu next month.
Jai Kumar Nath Shah, ACC vice-president and CAN president, said, "It's a great honour for us in Nepal and we are certainly very ready. The winner of this tournament goes forward to play in the U-19 World Cup next year and so this event is of major importance to all the countries at this level."
Four grounds will be used in Kathmandu to host the tournament, which runs from November 8 to 19. Two of them are brand new grounds developed specifically for the tournament. Nepal TV, the state broadcaster, will beam the semi-final and final live and will carry highlights of each day's play. Up to 46 countries will be able to access the satellite signal.
Fifteen teams play in the tournament, and are split into four groups. As semi-finalists in the last ACC U-19 Cup held in Pakistan in 2003, Nepal, Malaysia, Qatar and Kuwait were seeded and thus kept apart from each other's groups. The draw was made in Kuala Lumpur in the presence of Sultan Rana, ACC Development Manager, and Sivanandan Chinnadurai, the Honorary Secretary of the Malaysian Cricket Association.
Rana had raised concerns about security during his inspection tour of Kathmandu in September but said, "The Chief of Police and Chief of Army Staff gave me their assurances that no teams would face any problems during the tournament."
Group A: Nepal, Bahrain, Brunei Group B: Kuwait, Afghanistan, UAE, Iran Group C: Qatar, Singapore, Oman, Thailand Group D: Malaysia, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, Maldives