Pioneer look to maintain momentum

Cricket. Defending champions Wanderers are winless and destined to find the going tough against the Davis Turinawe-tutored Pioneer Cricket Club.

Aside from experience, the levels of expectation are pretty much similar when Pioneer Cricket Club clashes off with holders Wanderers in the National Women’s 40-Over League at Lugogo Oval today.
“No team in the title race wants to falter at this stage,” Pioneer’s Franklyn Najjumba said. “We want to keep pace with main contenders KICC and Tornado B,”
All-rounder Najjumba struck the season’s highest batting score thus far of 45 off 50 balls as they defeated favorites KICC by 27 runs a fortnight ago.

“That win over KICC propels our title quest,” skipper Justine Musubika said. With Musubika’s undoubted bowling strength and significant contribution from Barbara Mukankusi and Pricco Nakitende, Wanderers are in for a tough test.
“We lost our opener to Tornado B (last weekend) but our fight is not done,” Wanderers captain Janet Mbabazi said.

She, alongside Esther Ngabirye, Mary Nalule, Evelyn Anyipo and Julia Karungi are the survivors from the team that popped champagne last year. “Pioneer may be a more experienced side and albeit that, we also want to show the mark of champions on Saturday (today).” Mbabazi added. Across the Nile River, Jinja SS and Ndejje-Premier will look forward to their first season contest after JACC failed to turn up in both outfits’ opening fixtures.
“We hope to start off well despite losing some key players,” said Jinja SS coach Habibu Mugalula whose hopes lie in skipper Claire Mushakamba and Damalie Busingye.

A vast number of talents at the helm of Ugandan cricket today such as Ham Kayondo, Charles Waiswa and Arthur Kyobe were realised through Mini Cricket Development Program (MCDP). That talent search norm has not stopped. This year, the MCDP is set to attract over 6000 participants in U-11 and U-13 categories at district levels. These will partake in softball activation festivals at primary school level around the country.

“Once youngsters get introduced to the bat and ball early, there is a chance to grow their interest in the game of cricket,” Uganda Cricket Association Development Officer Henry Okecho told Saturday Monitor.

At Lugogo Oval
Pioneer vs. Wanderers, 10am
At Jinja Oval
Jinja SS vs. Ndejje-Premier, 10am

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Bowlers see blues as batsmen shine in 50-over league

It was a day for bowlers to forget as batsmen ran riot with seven half-centuries and four tons from five fixtures across both tiers of the Men’s National 50-Over League on Sunday. 
First, Roger Mukasa’s century of 137 runs off 72 balls cancelled out Arthur Kyobe’s brilliant 90-ball 124 ton for Division One champions Tornado B to defeat Challengers by six wickets at Lugogo Oval.

The result meant Tornado B ably recovered from their first season defeat while Challengers had begun their quest on the wrong note. 
“As a team, we are glad to have greatly improved after the loss to Tornado,” Mukasa said. “This year’s title race is really open,” he added. The flat Lugogo wicket was ideal for batsmen all day. 
When Tornado B stuck in their opponents, left-hander Kyobe stylishly struck 16 boundaries and six maximums as he shared a 167-run stand with Arnold Otwan (89 off 112) in the opening 26.1 overs. 
Kyobe was caught by Davis Karashani off Nicholas Kebba (1/49).

National 50-over league 
Tornado 100/10 Nile 101/4
(Nile won by six wickets)
Charity TF 206/10 Rounders 202/10
(Charity TF won by four runs)
Challengers 286/10 Tornado B 290/4
(Tornado B won by six wickets)
JACC 332/8 KC Budo 76/10
(JACC won by 256 runs)
Kampala Pirates 224/8 Patidar 226/4
(Patidar won by six wickets).

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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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Baby Cricket Cranes qualify for Bangladesh

Uganda’s U-19 national cricket side – The Baby Cricket Cranes - fly in from Dar es Salaam this evening knowing the hard work starts now and they cannot afford to rest on their laurels.

Henry Okecho’s boys whitewashed Tanzania by 125 runs in the final round of the Pepsi ICC Africa U-19 Cricket World Cup qualifier played at the Dar es Salaam Gymkhana Oval yesterday.

Man of match Collins Okwalinga (7/14) and spinner Frank Akakwansa (3/13) bowled out Tanzania for 44 runs in 22 overs after Abdallah Lubega (52), Zephaniah Arinaitwe (21) and Rogers Olipa (25) had helped Uganda set 169 in 46 overs – their biggest total of the tournament.

The massive win guaranteed that Uganda finished second and booked the solitary berth allocated to the continent for the global qualifier scheduled for Bangladesh later this year. Both Uganda (0.686) and Kenya (0.131) finished tied on six points but the former edged through courtesy for a better Net Run Rate (NRR).

Namibia (eight points) won the showpiece and walk straight into the 2016 Youth World Cup in Bangladesh despite falling to Kenya by four wickets yesterday.

The global qualifier, which will feature all the second-place finishers from the five ICC regions, comes as a reprieve to the Ugandans who almost bottled it. Only the champion of the global qualifier will progress to the main World Cup.

“We withheld their daily allowances for the two days they played poor cricket,” head of delegation Dennis Musali told Daily Monitor. “And our actions worked as the boys woke up and put on a clinical show against the hosts.”

Final qualifying round - results
Uganda 169/10 Tanzania 44/10
Namibia 101/10 Kenya 103/6
Nigeria 72/10 Botswana 63/10

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Team Uganda U19 Qualify for the Global World cup Qualifiers

Following the Table standing of the Pepsi ICC Africa U19 World Cup Qualifiers in Tanzania, Uganda settles in position 2, we would like to inform you that Uganda has qualified for the Global World cup Qualifiers to be held later this year.








1. Abdallah Lubega 52 off 101 balls
2. Rogers Olipa 25 off 42 balls
3 Zepahania Katungi 21 off 27 balls

BOWLING TANZANIA: 1. I. Mohammedi 3/14 in 6.3 Overs
2. A. Goodluck 3/32 in 8 Overs 

BATTING TANZANIA: 1. I Festo 13 off 29 balls

BOWLING UGANDA: 1. Collins Okwalinga 7/14 in 9.5 Overs 
2. Frank Akankwasa 3/13 in 9 Overs 

Congratulations to Team Uganda


Prepared by;

Franklyn Najjumba


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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Kenya destroy Uganda, Canada next

One win, two losses is the Cricket Cranes story, at the Pepsi Division II International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cricket League tournament, thus far, here in Windhoek, Namibia.
But even after suffering an annihilation courtesy of Kenya by five wickets in yesterday’s East African derby at the Trustco United Oval, the Cricket Cranes cannot afford to drop their shoulders and lose morale with two determined fixtures to play.

Bundled out
The Ugandans were a complete no-show as Kenya bundled them out for a paltry 129 in 43.2 overs and then proceeded to coast to victory with 101 balls to spare and five wickets in hand. Left-hander Arthur Kyobe top scored with 24 runs and showed solidity in a 44-run opening partnership with Abram Mutyagaba (14/33) but what followed was mind boggling.
Left-arm orthodox Shem Ngoche (4/17), his sibling James Ngoche (1/11) and Elijah Otieno (1/24) ignited the mother of all collapses as Uganda found themselves reeling at 77/6 in 19.3 overs. Shem trapped Mutyagaba for Leg Before Wicket (LBW) and immediately sent Roger Mukasa packing in similar fashion for a golden duck. 
Kyobe then got run out at 46/3 and Mukasa’s elder sibling Lawrence Ssematimba, too, didn’t bother the scorers. Phillemon Mukobe and skipper Frank Nsubuga tried to rebuild the innings but both fell for 21 trying too hard to up the scoring tempo whereas Adelaide-based Patrick Ochan was the last man out with a battling 14. The chase was one-way traffic from the onset despite the Kenyans conniving to lose five wickets.
Alex Obanda (32/45), Irfan Karim (26/60), Narendra Patel (27/37) and Collins Obuya (28/33) were all among the runs as the top four did the job to continue Kenya’s flawless record against Uganda in ICC-sanctioned competitive matches.
Ochan and Nsubuga delayed the inevitable by snaring two wickets apiece on a day that saw the Ugandans turn in arguably their worst shift with the bat since January 2014 in New Zealand.

Turnaround of fortunes
Coach Peter Kirsten will be hoping there is a turnaround of fortunes for his ‘firing blanks’ outfit against Canada at the Wanderers Affies Park today.
“Look, we have not yet played our best cricket and yet we have a victory to our names,” Kirsten said, after painful loss to Kenya, while rallying his charges in the team meeting held soon after the match award was given to Shem for his parsimonious bowling figures of 4 for 17.
“Canada (lost to Nepal yesterday) are not faring any better. We can beat them if the batsmen come to the party. One of our top four guys must get at least a 50 if we are to set the 200-run target. The fans back at home must continue believing because this team is capable of winning the remaining two round-robin games.”



After opening win over Nepal, Cricket Cranes lose to Namibia

It’s time to reflect. After the opening two days of the Pepsi Division II International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cricket League (WCL) produced mixed results, the Cricket Cranes will use today’s rest day as valuable time to re-strategise and plot afresh.

Coach Peter Kirsten’s boys clinched a sensational last ball two-run win against Nepal on the opening day (Saturday) in a low-scoring thriller at Affies Park. But their progress was immediately checked by Namibia, who coasted home with four wickets in hand and 22 balls spare at the scenic Wanderers Oval yesterday.

“The reserve day gives us a chance to rectify our mistakes and improve,” captain Frank Nsubuga told Daily Monitor. Top on Nsubuga and coach Peter Kirsten’s priority list will be seeking a quick remedy to the failure of the side to post a defendable par score of 200, which was the catalyst as Uganda strolled to a successful campaign at the Division III event in Kuala Lumpur last October.

“We came through against Nepal because we studied the conditions better and knew that the new wicket at Affies Park would take more spin later in the day. Our low score against them was justified. Then we batted better against Namibia but still didn’t get 200 and more so we put down two would have been match-changing catches.”

Dropped catch
Nsubuga was one of the ‘butter fingers’ culprits dropping Sarel Burger on 3 at extra cover with the scoreboard reading 87/4 in 25 overs and Uganda still much within victory sight.

Burger went on to anchor the innings with an unbeaten match-winning 37 off 71. Earlier Abram Mutyagaba, standing at first slip, had spilled an edge off Merwe Erasmus swishing blade with the scores on 29 for 2 and with the Namibian having only 9 runs to his credit.

The top order batsman rode his luck to notch a half-ton of 62 off 91 and forthwith take the Man-of-Match award. But coach Kirsten says fate is still in Uganda’s hands to decide their destiny. “One win and one loss is not the worst of starts,” said the South African tactician.

We believe we can improve and the top order batsmen can hit proper gear. Our performances in the next four games will decide where we want Uganda Cricket to be in the next four years.”

By Innocent Ndawula

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