Sunday, January 31, 2010

Comprehensive Revenge

Kenya registered their first international win of 2010 with a comprehensive 8 wicket win over Uganda in he first 20-20 match at Nairobi Gymkhana earlier today.

Winning the toss, Maurice Ouma opted to field and was rewarded with a tidy effort from his bowlers who restricted Uganda to 123/9 in their 20 overs. Things started well enough for Uganda who raced out of the blocks at 10 an over before Nehemiah Odhiambo, who had been bearing the brunt of the onslaught had Arthur Kyobe trapped in front for 6 (Uganda 31/1). Just 2 balls later, Jimmy Kamande removed the explosive Roger Mukasa and Kenya were suddenly looking good.
From then on, it was a fairly regular procession back to the pavilion for the Ugandan batsmen as Odhiambo, Kamande, Varaiya and Obado all chipped in with 2 wickets a piece. Varaiya was Particularly impressive as he also conceded just 9 runs off his 4 overs - his second personal best in as many games. So far he is proving the form player for Kenya in 2010.

Kenya's reply saw a change in the batting line up with Steve Tikolo opening with recalled David Obuya. It proved to be a good decision as the pair raced to 66 before Obuya was out caught by Baig off Arinaitwe for 24. Tikolo continued the onslaught unfazed and was rewarded with his first international 50 at the shortest format of the game. He did later become the second and last Kenyan casualty as he finally holed out to Thawithemwira off Muhumuza, but by then he had made 63 off just 44 deliveries and Kenya were as good as home.

Maurice Ouma came in to join Alex Obanda who was en route to a personal best of his own with 31 off 24 deliveries including the winning runs which came as he dispatched Muhumuza to the boundary with 16 balls still remaining. It was a convincing and emphatic victory for a side that lost their last 20-20 series to Uganda 3-0 and will have injected some much needed confidence into the side after the recent Intercontinental Cup match to Scotland. It also indicates a vast improvement at this format which bodes well ahead of the World Cup qualifiers in February.

Kenya 127/2 (Tikolo 63, Obanda 31*)
Uganda 123/9 (Baig 23, Mukasa 23, Varaiya 2/9, Kamande 2/18)
by 8 wickets

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