Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Schedule for Atul Shah Tournament

The schedule for the Atul Shah Memorial Tournament has been released, and sees Kenya A opening their campaign against Uganda at the Mombasa Sports Club. With a round robin format, the event ensures that each team gets three matches followed by either a final or playoff for the plate. Played in whites and using a red Kookaburra ball, this will be a great opportunity for the teams to notch up some competetive experience at a level higher than they are used to in their respective domestic competitions.
Active duty is something that never really happened for the Kenya A squad under the KCA, and it is heartening to see that Cricket Kenya realise the need to give the players on the fringes of the national team the chance to both improve their level and show their worth. Too often have we seen promising young players thrust too early into the national team, where they have suffered due to lack of exposure. With this event and the upcoming tour to Denmark, hopefully this will now become a thing of the past.
Squads for the event have not yet been released, but with only a week to go until the first match, one would expect them to be hard at training. I am looking forward especially to see the relative make up of the two Kenya teams. There are definitely some Coast players who deserve to be in the Kenya A squad, so it will be interesting to see whether they are called up, or left to bolster the CCA XI. If so, the match between Kenya A and the CCA XI will pit the best of the upcoming Nairobi players against the best from the Coast. Both sides will no doubt feel they have a lot to prove to each other and the selectors. This tournament will also no doubt feature heavily in determining the final squad to travel to Denmark. For the Kenyan players, there is certainly plenty to play for. For Uganda and Tanzania, it will be a chance to gain experience and also to guage where they are relative to the other Associates.
Tournament Schedule:
Wed 7th June:
Kenya A vs. Uganda at MSC
CCA vs. Tanzania at Coast Gymkhana.
Thurs 8th June:
Kenya A vs. Tanzania at MSC
CCA vs. Uganda at CG.
Sat 10th June:
Uganda vs. Tanzania at MSC
Kenya A vs. CCA at CG
Sun 11th June:
Final at MSC
Plate at CK.
I will also include these in the fixtures list.

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