It’s all systems go

In 2014, Uganda won the right to host the ICC World Cricket League (WCL) Division Three event but later lost the honours to Malaysia on grounds of insecurity.

If there were any inklings of doubt that some changes would still arise, they well were buried after Uganda Cricket Association (UCA) officially launched the 2017 ICC WCL Division Three showpiece on Friday. “We are pleased to host the world,” UCA Chairman Bashir ‘Badu’ Ansasira, flanked by Local Organising Committee (LOC) chairman Paul Kaheru and Tournament Director Justine Ligyalingi, said in front of a full house at Copper Chimney Restaurant in Lugogo.

This event will take place from May 23-31 at Lugogo, Kyambogo and Entebbe ovals as Uganda and five other nations compete for two promotion slots to Division Two.

“Our team is very well motivated. We have stayed too long in Division Three. We can do better. I urge the Ugandans to turn up in large numbers to support their team and also catch a glimpse of priceless action at no cost,” added Ansasira. Kaheru announced his 12-man committee that includes Assistant Inspector General of Police in charge of General Duties Andrew Sorowen, who is responsible for security.

Other notable names are Martin Ondeko (transport), Innocent Ndawula (media and communications), Rita Tinka (catering), Dr. David Meya (medical), Eric Kamara (liaison), Alvin Bagaya (accommodation) and Kenneth Mulondo for accreditation.

Significant steps
Clearly, it is all systems go as UCA has taken significant steps in organising the grounds as well as tightening the security grip ahead of the six-nation tournament.

“The grounds are playing much better and we received plaudits from Team Kenya in the just-concluded Easter Series,” noted Hanumant Katkar, LOC member in charge of the grounds.

“We have been tested by the weather but our grounds men are showing resolve that we can deliver the best grounds and wickets in the history of WCL.”

There was further assurance on security in Sorowen’s absence. 
“We had lessons to learn in 2015,” UCA CEO Ligyalingi told this paper.

“This time, we have worked with the higher levels like the office of the IGP, Ministry of Education and Sports and the Office of the First Lady. There have been joint meetings with resolutions approved by ICC for security at the hotels, grounds and the routes to the venues.”

Bagaya revealed that Hotel Africana is the official teams’ hotel.

And in a bid to foot the Shs1b budget for the tournament, UCA has sought external financial support.

“We have gone out with a strong campaign seeking for local partners and government to assist us as we need about Shs700m for local preparations and requirements minus the national team bill.” Ligyalingi added.

April 29 - May 7: Saudi Arabia Tour 
May 23 - 31 2017: ICC WCL Division III

Uganda: 5th 2015 ICC WCL Division Two
Canada: 6th 2015 ICC WCL Division Two
Malaysia: 3rd 2014 ICC WCL Division Three
Singapore: 4th 2014 ICC WCL Division Three
USA: 1st 2016 ICC WCL Division Four
Oman: 2nd 2016 ICC WCL Division Four


Damani dismantle Charity to go top of Jazz Safari National Cricket League

Aziz Damani hurried Charity Trust Fund off the oval for their second successive win to go top of the Jazz Safari National Cricket League by eight wickets at Kyambogo Oval with 13 points after three matches on March 26.

Their closest chasers Challengers, recovering from their last outing setback where they went down by nine wickets to Damani, bridged the gap to one point in an equally ruthless manner with an eight-wicket win over sorry Patidar Samaj at the lakeside Entebbe Oval. But Division II graduates Damani, who lost their opening game to Tornado Bee, own the bragging rights for now after recovering to pick up two wins on the bounce.

On Sunday, they bowled out a student-packed Charity Trust Fund for a basketball score of 47 thanks to classy seam-bowling spells of 6/17 and 3/17 from Man-of-the-Match Kenneth Waiswa and rejuvenated Emmanuel Isaneez. Charity didn’t help their cause with carefree batting as witnessed by their top order batters Simon Ssesaazi (17 off 23) and Varinder Singh (12 off 29) who gifted the opposition their wickets cheaply after getting starts.

Damani top order batters Arnold Otwani (16 off 15), Emmanuel Hasahya (13* off 22) and coach-player Steve Tikolo (8*) survived a few scores on their to victory inside nine overs. 
Across town in Entebbe, national team trainees Irfan Afridi (4/1) and David Wabwire (4/12) partnered to bowl out Patidar for 40 before Mohammed Aneef (18) and Arthur Kyobe (12*) breezed home in just four overs. In Jinja, Amos Kyazze and Emma Odeng helped Africa Cricket Club get off the mark with a 44-run win over JACC.

Division I
Nile 189/9 K.Tigers 142/10
Charity 47/10 A. Damani 48/2
Patidar 40/10Challengers 41/1
Division II
Africa 173/8 Jinja SS 129/8
K. Pirates 157/10 Mwiri 82/10
Division III
Nyakasura 178/10 JACC 75/10


Close contest as UCA go to polls

Mukesh Shukla’s 11th hour inclusion onto the coveted list of candidates to take-over as chairman of Uganda Cricket Association (UCA) has had tongues wagging in the fraternity.

An earlier deadline of February 10 had ruled out the former vice chairman but after his club Kampala Institute of Cricket Clubs (KICC) ‘nominated’ him, the businessman took advantage of the ‘non-binding deadline’ ahead of the elective assembly due tomorrow at Kati Kati Restaurant, Lugogo.

Shukla’s late entry raised the number of contestants to the top job to three with Nile’s Bashir ‘Badu’ Ansasira and Tornado’s Paul Luswata Nsibuuka already in the fray whereas Eric Kamara (Wanderers) and incumbent Jeremy Kibuukamusoke (Tornado Bee) are vying for UCA secretary.

After complying with the National Council of Sports (NCS) sports regulations of 2014, UCA CEO Justine Ligyalingi revealed that other posts have been quashed and the mandate will be with the new chairman to appoint working committee heads including but not restricted to Finance, Disciplinary, Marketing and Games.

Outgoing chairman Richard Mwami, despite being eligible for another term, says he will not be standing pushing each camp to seize the occasion. 
“It is about bringing fundamental change and not just a change of guards,” said Shukla, also the vice chairman of NRM Entrepreneurs League in Kampala Central.

“There is also a basic area of concern which is financial transparency. We also have one ground and yet we should be with five from the strategic planning I did as vice chairman in 2009 under Dr Kato Sebbaale.”

But for Alvin Bagaya, who is from Ansasira’s camp, it is about giving the power of elections back to the people. “Many things have happened the wrong way lately,” said Bagaya.

“But if Badu is elected then it will be all systems go again. His plan is not out this world and if you have read his manifesto, it is very practical. His passion for the game is also unrivalled and the electorate seems to favour our candidate.”

Robert Kisubi, who is the campaigning manager of Nsibuuka, however believes many of the younger guys are rushing to takeover and advises that they should wait for their time.

“Our club always votes for the best candidate who is by a coincidence a Tornado this year,” said Kisubi. 
“He understands the game well, captained Uganda and is from a cricketing family of the Luswatas. From his world as a banker to financial consultant, Nsibuuka’s corporate governance will be key. He is his own man, the ambassador our game needs.”

Candidates for chairman
Ansasira ‘Badu’ Bashir - Nile CC, 
Paul Luswata Nsibuuka – Tornaddo
Mukesh Shukla – KICC

Candidates for secretary
Eric Kamara – Wanderers
Jeremy Kibuukamusoke – Tornado Bee
* Each of the 8 voting clubs will have a board member

By Innocent Ndawula









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