Paras Khadka is an exceptional cricketer who has made an exemplary mark on Nepal’s sports field and is rightfully called Nepal’s “Sachin Tendulkar”. He has taken Nepal Cricket to new heights with his consistent effort and hard work. Paras has made his place at every Nepali’s heart with his amazing balling, batting, and fielding skills while leading the team as Captain from the year 2008 to 2019 before he announced his retirement from international cricket on 3rd August 2021.
Childhood and Family
Paras Khadka was born on 24 October 1987 in Kathmandu where he spent his childhood. He was very good in academics and never imagined himself as a cricketer although he cherished sports and was more into Football and Basketball.
He went to South Point Boarding High School, close to his residence in Buddhanagar, Baneswor. Paras was loved by all his teachers because of his polite nature and academic achievements. Paras always aimed to be an architect and was interested in designs and buildings besides cricket. Captain’s family has always been very supportive of his journey. His mother Rita Khadka, father Mohan Khadka, and younger brother, Pankaj Khadka, two years younger than him are more like his best friends, were the greatest motivation in his early days. His paternal grandparents Prem and Saraswati Khadka equally support Paras.
Paras always received immense support from his family without being questioned regarding any of his decisions. He was always provided with the equipment to hone his skill. His brother always tagged along whether it was a match in the alley with their cousins or neighbors or tournaments. His family was there throughout, from organizing picnics alongside the grounds of Tribhuvan University in Kritipur where Paras would play to cheer him up to wearing his jersey with number 77 at the World Cup matches.
Paras is married to his long-term girlfriend Prapti Rajya Laxmi Rana.
Paras started his career in cricket with the aim of winning a trophy for his school in Dipendra Running Shield where he also won a “Man of The Series Award” which was the beginning of many of his hundreds of such awards. Dipendra Running Shield was one of the biggest tournaments in Kathmandu and winning this tournament gave spark to his passion after which he has led the team from Division five to four to one to One Day International (ODI) and finally, a breakthrough for all the Nepalese and Nepali sports, The World Cup in the year 2014.
Paras Khadka first represented Nepal in the Under- 15 Asia Cup held in the United Arab Emirates and played Under- 19’s against India. Paras played his first Under- 19’s World Cup in Bangladesh. Paras was “Man of the Series” in the year 2007 in the Under- 19 Asian Cricket Council (ACC) Trophy where he picked 12 wickets.
Paras Khadka was looking for a future in Australia and he was applying for the visa although he remained the Vice-Captain for Nepali Cricket Team before he was selected as the Captain for the team in the year 2008. He gave up on his plan to go to Australia and dedicated himself to cricket after he was chosen as the Captain.
He successfully led the team to win (International Cricket Council) ICC World Cup Division 5 and Division Four in Malaysia. In 2014, he became the eighth player to take a wicket in a first ball. He set the record against Irfan Ahmed, a right-hand bowler of Pakistan, in Hongkong.
He made his debut in ODI matches as Captain in the year 2018 in the Netherlands. After his evident contribution to Nepali Cricket Team, Paras retired in the year 2021 from International Cricket.
He took Nepali Cricket to unimaginable heights and gave many success stories in Cricket to Nepal and Nepalese. His unconditional contribution, his skills, and his leadership qualities are what make him “Paras Khadka”.
The respect and love that Paras receives from all the Nepalese is a small prize for everything that he has done for the pride of Nepal and Nepalese. Paras has also received awards for his efforts and hard work as a player. He received Nepal Sports Journalists Forum (NSFJ) Pulsar Player of the Year in 2016 and 2017. He was also awarded Nepal National and International Players’ Association (NNIPA) Best cricketer of the Year 2017. He was the proudest when he was International Cricket Council (ICC) Men’s Associate Player of the Decade Nominee. he was quoted by the World Cup souvenir program as “arguably good enough to be in the line-up of any of the Test-playing countries”.
Paras Khadka was accused of being involved in corruption by Amir Akhtar, founder of Everest Premier League. Amir filed an investigation request to the Cricket Association Nepal (CAN) after discovering CAN members including Paras’ involvement in the Baliyo Nepal Campaign. He filed a complaint letter to the CAN’s president asking for an explanation regarding the matter and warned that he would forward the matter to the International Cricket Council (ICC) if the CAN did not receive the complaint within 48 hours. He threatened to take the matter further to the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA). Amir was criticized as it was a very low move to accuse the players that always made the nation proud.
Baliyo Nepal Nutrition Initiative (BNNI) is Inspired by the belief “access to right nutrition will enable next generation to realize their dreams” and aims to marshal all forces: government, private sector, international and non-governmental organizations, civil society, and the people of Nepal to end malnutrition by increasing awareness among the general public. The initiative in April organized the Baliyo Nepal Cup tournament in Lumbini Province where a total of 12 district teams of Lumbini Province took part, with Rupandehi 11 winning the title. The participating districts were Kapilvastu, Parasi, Rupandehi, Argakhanchi, Gulmi, Palpa, Dang,Pyuthan, Rolpa, Rukum, Banke, and Bardiya.
Paras Khadka along with the National Cricket Team of members held a press conference in 2014 to announce their decision of boycotting the national league as they disregarded team’s demand of restructuring of Cricket Association of Nepal and better facilities for players. This resulted in CAN being drawn into controversy of financial mismanagement.
Paras Khadka is a gem to Nepali sports and without him Nepali Cricket Team wouldn’t be able to taste this success. Paras Khadka is not only an excellent cricketer but also a very good human. He is very humble and polite despite his achievements and never misses an opportunity to express his gratitude towards his team for their hard work and to his fans for their support.
He has always made Nepal proud and is an inspiration to many young players. He has always pushed the team to be better and the best. Jersey 77 will be Nepal’s forever favorite and irreplaceable which is why CAN has decided to not use it on any other player in the honor of Paras Khadka and his contribution to Nepali Cricket.
- Featured photos from Paras Khadka’s personal Instagram and Wikipedia