Thursday, June 08, 2006

Uganda Defeat Kenya A

A dismal batting performance by Kenya A yesterday allowed Uganda to walk away with a 3-wicket victory in their first match of the Atul shah Memorial Tournament. Batting first after winning the toss, Kenya were restricted to 140 by the Ugandans. Captain Brijal Patel hit 60 and Hiren Varaiya made 25, but other than that, Kenya's batsmen were disappointing. In reply, Uganda struggled a little, but still managed to reach the target with 4 overs and 3 wickets to spare. Benjamin Musoke top scored for the Ugandans with 54.
The tournament website does not seem to have a scorecard or result up from this match yet, so I am going on Ernest Ndunda's article in the Standard (I assume the 1401 runs for Kenya is actually 140…). This result is certainly a set-back for Kenya, and they will have to come back with a big victory over Tanzania today if they are still to be in with a chance of making Sunday's final. Playing at Mombasa Sports Club, they will be hoping that the CCA can pull off another win when they take on Uganda at the Coast Gymkhana ground. A second win for either Uganda or the CCA will almost certainly give them the favourite's tag as well as a place in the final.
Following on from Kenya A's poor showing against Holland, it is very worrying that so few runs were scored yesterday. When one batsman reaches 60, one would expect at least one or two others to also get to decent scores. 140 is simply never going to be enough. The players in the 'A team' are those considered on the brink of the national team. If they struggle against an Associate team like Uganda, no disrespect meant, how are they going to fare against bowlers such as Flintoff and Vettori in the World Cup? Hopefully someone other than Patel will step up. His efforts in both matches are commendable, but we need to see efforts like this from the younger players. After all, they are the ones we will be looking to in the future. Let's hope they are able to do better today.

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