Patidar bask in T20 glory

 Patidar Samaj produced a stellar performance to beat Nile by four wickets to clinch their second National Men’s Twenty20 League at Lugogo Oval on Sunday.
“It feels great to be champions again,” Patidar skipper Ankit Patel told Daily Monitor upon lifting their second T20 title since 2011.
The success also ended the club’s four years of hurt encrypted by the departure of Charles Waiswa, Lawrence Ssematimba, Roger Mukasa and Akbar Baig to Tornado B.

“Since that quartet left us, we had forgotten how to win,” admitted tournament MVP Ankit.
“But this feat is what all the lads will try to build on so as to earn promotion back to the topflight limited-overs league next year.”
Just like the Sixes Challenge miss in February, it was another defeat for Nile in the T20 final.
“We have failed to win a final on two occasions. But we’ll work harder to finish in top four of the Division One 50-Over League and possibly win the Champions Trophy,” Nile skipper David Musoke said. After Musoke opted to bat first, Patidar’s Hasmukh Patel (4/21) and Emmanuel Taban (3/22) rubbed salt in Nile’s wounds.

It needed Suleman Sharif (20 off 18) and Kenneth Waiswa (14 off 19) covered up for Nile’s mediocre batting as they went on to set 120 for 9.
“I think we were about 20 runs short of our target. It eventually cost us.” Musoke noted.
Needing six per over to win, Patidar were reeling at 37-2 after five overs by Suleman (3/25) and Nasser Ahmed (2/16) but Ankit restored parity with a 28-ball 24 to clinch victory with five balls to spare.

Nile 120/9 Patidar 123/6
(Patidar won by four wickets)
Nile 144/6 Wanderers 31/4 (D/L)
(Nile won by 24 runs after D/L)
Damani 122/7 (47) Patidar 50/1 (D/L)
(Patidar won by nine wickets after D/L)

MVP: Ankit Patel (Patidar Samaj)
Best batsman: Arthur Kyobe (Challengers)
Best bowler: Mohammed Aneef (Challengers)
Best fielder: Ankit Patel (Patidar Samaj)
Best wicket-keeper: Nirav Patel (Patidar)

2014: Challengers
2013: Wanderers
2012: Tornado
2011: Patidar

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Cricket Cranes intent to skip Botswana hurdle at Africa T20 championship

New Cricket Cranes skipper Brian Masaba is a man known for few words, serenity and precise judgment.

After guiding a new-look Team Uganda to an opening eight-wicket victory over Tanzania on Friday, Masaba believes his side can go on and produce a miraculous show at the Pepsi ICC Africa Division One Twenty20 Championship in Benoni, South Africa. 
“In spite of the obvious lack of experience in our side, we are still going out to win every game,” Masaba told Sunday Monitor via phone from the team base at Garden Court in Johannesburg.

“That’s how the game of T20 should be played,” the former U-19 skipper said. Such mentality is what Masaba will instill in his teammates today when they face Botswana in tournament Day Three at the Sahara Willowmoore Oval in Gauteng.

“We want to take one game at a time and slowly win back full trust from our fans back home,” he said. There could be bowling changes against the Karabo Modise-led side with Masaba opting for more spin as the wickets offer much turn.

And further, all debutants impressed coach Peter Kirsten in the victory over the Tanzanians which has ignited a growing aura of confidence in the team camp. 
Particularly, the South African tactician lauded Kamal Shahzad’s work rate after he took 1/32 as Tanzania set 128 for 7.

However, spinners Frank Nsubuga (2/12) and Henry Ssenyondo (2/8) stood out most with pivotal spells including the prize wicket of Abhik Patwa who was dropped early and went on to clobber four boundaries and five maximums for a 51-ball 73. Uganda’s reply received an early blessing when Arthur Kyobe (34 off 22) was dropped in the third over (23-0). The left-hander went on to put up an opening stand of 60 with his Challengers’ counterpart Arnold Otwan.

The latter briefly shared the crease with Shahzad (13 run-a-ball) and Otwan earned a precious maiden international half-ton of 51* off 40 deliveries in a match-winning 43-run third-wicket combo with explosive Jonathan Ssebanja (29 off 13) in the 15th over.
More decent batting against the Batswana could illuminate the Cricket Cranes’ chances in the quest for a berth at the ICC Global T20 Qualifier due Scotland from July 9 August 2.

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More at stake as Uganda, Kenya meet in T20 derby

From the Rugby Elgon Cup, perennial Cecafa engagements and more, you do not need much to tell the sporting rivalry between Uganda and Kenya.
A new episode of this East African derby is on cards today when the two friendly foes clash at the oval today in Benoni, South Africa on Day Two of the Pepsi ICC Africa Division One Twenty20 Championship. 
This will be the sixth T20 meeting between both sides in four years as they pursue the two available slots to the ICC Global Qualifier scheduled for July 9 - August 2 in Scotland.

“We need to beat either of Kenya or Namibia to have a chance for a berth in Scotland,” Team Uganda captain Brian Masaba said. “Obviously, we know the Kenyans better and we are ready to throw everything at them for a result,”

Mission Scotland
The Cricket Cranes will not only be aiming to pay back 19-run defeat suffered in front of their home crowd at Lugogo as they surrendered their African Twenty20 title to Kenya in 2013, they know victory will help them inch closer to Scotland. 
“That was a painful loss to take and this is the perfect time for revenge,” said veteran spinner Frank Nsubuga. 
In that loss, Alex Obanda, who was dropped early on, blazed 64 off 47 to help Kenya set 156 for 5. 
With charged levels of adrenaline, top-scorer Deus Muhumuza (22 off 16) and Kenya’s Tanmay Mishra had to be calmed down as Uganda fell short on 137.

“Defeat against our brothers always leaves us wounded but we will be pumped up enough to erase such low memories on Saturday (today),” Nsubuga added. 
Whereas Uganda has a new look side that has seven eight new faces from the team that was in Windhoek, Kenya have kept faith with their tried and tested crop, adding only a few youngsters.

Uganda vs. Kenya 
Namibia vs. Ghana 
Kenya vs. Botswana

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KICC miss T20 party, Damani make quarters

Kampala Institute of Cricket Clubs (KICC) will turn their energies to the 50-over format after failing to make the National Men’s Twenty20 League quarterfinals.
KICC failed to chase identical 150-run targets in narrow 11 and one-run defeats to Aziz Damani and Tornado respectively at Lugogo Oval on Sunday. 
The losses meant they finished fifth in the T20 league, a drop from last year’s display when they came second. “Losing by a single run and missing out on the last eight is really tough to bear,” KICC skipper Hanumant Katkar said. “Those were two must-win matches but we missed key players like Emmanuel (Isaneez) and Hamza (Saleh).”

The newly-formed Damani will now play their maiden T20 quarterfinals in a fortnight.
“We have been playing as underdogs and our patience has paid off,” Sarfaraz Chunara, the Pakistan-oriented club captain, said. Despite Sai Ware’s 3/24, Damani built on Ali Hunzai’s innings of 41 off 25 Ghulam Hunzai’s 15-ball 30 to set 149 for 9. 
John Gabula made 33 off 45 while Abdul Mubarak added 38 off 25 but KICC’s lower order crumbled at the hands of Chunara (3/29). 
Later, KICC failed to contain Deus Muhumuza and his unbeaten half-ton of 51 runs off 39 balls guided Tornado to 149 for 6.

Kyobe blitz scripts Challengers’ 13 successive T20 victory

Holders Challengers made a huge statement of intent by comfortably defeating star-studded Tornado B by 70 runs in a crunch National Twenty20 Cricket League tie at the lakeside oval in Entebbe on Sunday afternoon.
“We didn’t think it was going to come this easy,” Challengers’ skipper Mohammed Aneef told Daily Monitor soon after the one-sided show. The victory not only extended Challengers’ T20 unbeaten streak to seven matches this season but also to 13 since last season’s competition in March 2014. Challengers were reeling at 28-2 after 4.5 overs but opener Arthur Kyobe repaired the innings with an unbeaten powerful knock of 96.
The left-hander’s exhibition of controlled aggression comprised eight boundaries and four sixes. 
“I did everything right so it’s not my fault,” a delighted Kyobe said when asked whether he didn’t rue missing out on a ton by four runs.
To highlight his intensity in the 69-ball knock, Kyobe scored 12 runs off left-armer Charles Waiswa’s third over and pummeled another 18 off the paceman’s final over as Challengers set 144 for 6. 
And once Aneef (3/15) bowled opener Roger Mukasa for a golden duck, it was all over for Tornado B.

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Ssebanja hits fastest T20 century in local history

Charity Trust Fund skipper Jonathan Ssebanja put up a stellar show as he scored the fastest century ever in Ugandan cricket. 
The batsman mixed ultimate precision with merciless hitting as he reached 100 runs off 35 balls in his team’s 67-run victory over Indian-oriented side Damani in the National Twenty20 League action at Lugogo Oval on Sunday afternoon. 
“What! Really?” a pleased, yet surprised Ssebanja exclaimed when Daily Monitor sought him out after he attained his feat. “This is amazing.” 
Ssebanja’s century, produced amidst a cacophony of noise from the sizeable crowd that witnessed the deed, is now the joint fourth-quickest ever alongside Namibia’s Louis van der Westhuizen, who attained the same feat against Kenya in unofficial T20 international on November 7, 2011.
“Like any other day, I went out and hit the ball. It was coming off the bat nicely but, I didn’t know the century was that quick,” he said. 
If Damani captain Sarfaraz Chunara felt he had taken the right decision to field first, then his teammates knew how wrong it was after Ssebanja walked onto the crease in the fifth over.
The 26-year-old’s unbeaten 38-ball innings were littered with nine boundaries and 11 huge maximums across the oval. He finished with 120 as Charity recovered from 22-2 to set 189 for 4 in 16 overs. 
“I thought my century against Rounders in Jinja last year (161 runs off 70 balls) was my best but today’s ton takes first place,” Ssebanja said. 
In reply, Damani, who had earlier shocked Nile with a six-wicket morning victory, put up 122 for 7. “This was our team’s first competitive day of action in Uganda but we played competitively all day,” Chunara said. 
And for Ssebanja? “Oh! He was just incredible today; lovely innings despite being on the losing end.” the former Nile and KICC player added.
Fastest centuries

30 balls: Chris Gayle, Royal Challengers Bangalore vs. Pune Warriors, IPL, April 23, 2013
31 balls: AB De Villiers, South Africa vs. West Indies, ODI, January 18, 2015.
34 balls: Andrew Symonds, Kent vs. Middlesex, Twenty20 Cup, July 2, 2004
35 balls: Louis van der Westhuizen, Namibia vs. Kenya, unofficial T20 international, November 7, 2011
36 balls: Corey Anderson, New Zealand vs. West Indies, ODI, January 1, 2014.

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