- Published in National League
ganda’s latest sensation Arnold Otwani was already talking about playing cricket in International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cricket League (WCL) Division II soon after guiding the Cricket Cranes to a five-wicket win over Denmark in the opening game of Division III here in Al Amarat, Muscat on Friday.
The Division II showpiece doesn’t happen until April 18-28, 2019 in Namibia but after his match-winning knock of 88 off 86 balls, Otwani can dare to dream.
“Oh Yeah, I feel so good. It has been more than a year away from the national team. I had some ups and downs but I have worked so hard to be here again,” said Otwani, whose knock comprised of 15 boundaries and helped Uganda reach their target with 82 balls to spare.
“I have proved my critics wrong. I am happy to deliver and this should be the start of many good things to come. I dedicate this award to the coach (Steve Tikolo) because he believed in me.
“Now our main target is to go to Division II. We don’t want to either look back or even go a level down. Even in the next matches our plan is to come hard at the opponents but by playing basic cricket. We are hungry to do well.”
Only two places, for the top two finishers, are at stake from this six-team global event to progress to the Division II in a series of leagues constituted as the qualification pathway to the 2023 World Cup in India.
The 23-year-old Otwani also paid tribute to his fellow top performer on the day Charles Waiswa, who finished with figures of 4 for 25. “Charles bowled very well. He earned all his wickets because he had to hit the deck hard and extract some more pace and bounce from the wicket.”
The Cricket World Cup (CWC) League 2 line-up will be completed by the top four teams from Division 2, who will join Scotland, Nepal and United Arab Emirates. The bottom four teams from the Oman event will play in the ICC Cricket World Challenge League.
By press time, Uganda was taking on USA in a crunch fixture looking to make the Americans pay for having inflicted a 13-run defeat on them during the same event hosted by the former in May 2017 at the lakeside Entebbe Cricket Ground.
It was that loss that condemned Uganda to unchartered territory with their first-ever relegation to the Division IV tier. Luckily, Uganda quickly regained its status by winning subsequent Division IV event in Malaysia May 2018.
ICC WCL DIVISION III, OMAN
Kenya 164 all out in 49.2 overs
Oman 166/5 in 42.5 overs
Oman won by 5 wickets
(with 43 balls remaining)
Man of Match: Kaleemullah of Oman
(4 for 26 in 10 overs including 4 maidens)
Denmark 165 all out in 44.2 overs
Uganda 167/5 in 36.2 overs
Uganda won by 5 wickets
(with 82 balls remaining)
Man of Match: Arnold Otwani
(88 runs off 86 balls (15 fours) & 4 catches)
TUESDAY’S FIXTURES - NOVEMBER 13
Oman vs. Denmark, OCA Turf 1
Uganda vs. Kenya, OCA Turf 2
Olayinka Olaleye was the star, as Nigeria sealed an unbeaten run in the ICC Under 19 World Cup Africa Division Two Qualifier tournament in Potchefstroom on Tuesday.
The opening batsman struck a majestic 110, as he and Samuel Mba 62 put on 148 for the first wicket, and pull his side clear in the final. That alliance was enough to put Nigeria out of sight, as Sierra Leone were overwhelmed by the opening stand, which lasted 34.1 overs. Beyond that opening partnership, only Segun Ogundipe made a meaningful contribution, as Nigeria’s total petered out to 242 for nine, assisted by 21 extras. In response, Sierra Leone served up their worst batting performance of the tournament. They were bundled out for just 105, with skipper George Ngegba fighting a lone battle with 31.
In the battle for the last qualifying spot in Division 1, Tanzania got the better of Mozambique, posting a testing 215 all out. At 89 for five, they had to depend on their middle-order to make the play, and 15 year-old Dhrumit Mehta and Kartik Sayal stepped up. Nigeria and Tanzania now join Uganda, Kenya and Namibia in Africa Division One, who will play their qualifier for the 2010 ICC U-19 World Cup early next year.
Nigeria’s qualification in particular was a reward for their early preparations that saw them camp in Uganda for 10 days despite losing the series 4-1.
DAY THREE RESULTS - SCW
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.
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.”