Cricket in Nepal

by Hannah Young

I would like to tell you about my magical experience in Nepal.

Last year, on 19th October 2014, I was lucky enough to represent my country in the first England female visually impaired cricket match played in Nepal. I said goodbye to my husband, Sean and my guide dog, Diane at Heathrow airport and flew out to start my adventure. It was a long flight from Heathrow to Delhi and then from Delhi to Kathmandu; I arrived very tired but happy to be there. We stayed in Kathmandu for the night, before setting off the next day on a long 8 hour coach trip. The roads in Nepal were very dangerous with sheer drops either side of the road; there are a lot of accidents. My team mates, who had better sight than me, and the coaches, were very scared going round the corners. I sat there laughing as I couldn’t see anything, so it didn’t bother me. It didn’t help when the coach driver said, ‘If you look to your left, you can see the lorry that fell off yesterday,’ as we came round the corner, but we made it safely to Pokhara.

We stayed for three days, training and acclimatising, getting used to the heat. While we were there, we went up into the mountains on the cable cars and visited two temples. We went to local markets and tasted the local food; they were celebrating the Diwali festival. We took a 40 minute flight back to Kathmandu where we played our three matches against the female Nepalese cricket team. Unfortunately we lost the games but we didn’t feel too bad, as they have been playing for nine years. We had a great time with the team and made some good friends. We visited the local blind school and saw how they live their lives, it was a great experience. We also went to the Ambassador’s residence for a reception where we had a meal with the Ambassador, the Nepalese team and local dignitaries. I’m hoping this is the first of many trips.

We got back to England on the 29th October; I was very tired but very happy. I was not much company for Sean when I got home, as I slept just about non-stop for a week, it was a wonderful experience. I am a much more active person since being diagnosed with BBS. If you told me before my diagnosis that I would be playing cricket for my country in Nepal, I would not have believed you. It just shows that when we put our minds to it, we can do anything. I play cricket, football, tennis and I do sonic shooting; I didn’t do any of these things before and I would just like to say that even though we have BBS, we shouldn’t stop dreaming and trying to achieve our goals in life.