Challengers castled, spinners rule Lugogo

A text-book ton from Ronak Patel and five-wicket hauls from spinners Innocent Ndawula and Hamza Amir highlighted the Jazz Safari National Cricket League on Sunday.
But there was a small matter of 2016 runners-up Challengers who, yet again connived to lose a fourth successive match by 18 runs to KICC at Kyambogo Oval.

With the latter having set 262-7 thanks to Siraje Nsubuga’s stand-out 104-ball 54, Challengers were 227-4 after midway the 42nd over before being bowled out in a space of 37 balls. Challengers’ pair Mohammed Aneef (59 off 92) and Naseer Ahmed’s (63 off 100) featured in a solid 90-run second-wicket combobut it was all in vain.

On the brighter side of things, Ronak struck 128 runs off 84 balls - the fourth ton of the season - as his side beat bottom side Patidar Samaj by 340 runs for the fifth win in nine matches in Entebbe. Barely a week into the country from India for the Rainbow Night Cricket Cup, Ronak made 14 boundaries and a six on his league debut. If Ronak carried the day for batsmen, it is spinners Ndawula and Amir who shared the limelight in Lugogo.

Despite making it eight wins in nine outings after beating Charity by 208 runs, Aziz Damani had no answers for left-arm orthodox bowler Ndawula who snared a career best bowling figures of 7/54. 
“I will frame this match ball,” burly Ndawula said moments after picking his innings’ ball from umpires Grace Mutyagaba and Patrick Makumbi.

However, Damani batsmen had been unstoppable especially Arnold Otwani (75) and Wasim Butt (63) as they set 280-9. Ndawula hoped his teammates would match his performance with the bat. But Charity were bowled out for 72 runs in 22 overs with Cosmas Kyewuta getting 18 runs as leg spinner Amis took 8/11 in a six-over spell to beat Ndawula to the Man of Match award.

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UCA intent to bear fruits at Mini Cricket finals

The obligation of nurturing talent through well-structured grass root systems has proved more of a burden than necessity to many sports federations in the country.
To a large extent, Uganda Cricket Association (UCA) has done the opposite. Schools’ cricket week programmes, clinics, camps and Mini Cricket competitions are all part of the vindication. 
And as the latter Crown Beverages Pepsi and Banks Town Cricket Club-sponsored event climaxes at Lugogo Oval today, UCA wants to score highest.

“We are sure of getting tomorrow’s stars probably for the ICC 2023 ODI World Cup,” UCA development manager Henry Okecho.

“There are key youngsters from the regional qualifiers we are trying to keep our keen eyes on,” Okecho told Daily Monitor.

The Mini Cricket started early this year with the District competitions, where a total of 18 districts and 143 primary schools participated across five different regions. 
And 16 schools that triumphed in the different regions will take part in the U11 and U13 categories in both genders. 
Some of the current Cricket Cranes players now in South Africa are products of the Mini Cricket such as Roger Mukasa, Jonathan Sebanja and Henry Senyondo from East Kololo Primary School, Davis Karashani from Lohana Academy (Kampala) and Arthur Kyobe from Magwa Primary School (Jinja).

2014 MINI CRICKET FINALS FINALISTS 
CENTRAL REGION 
U-11 Boys - St Edwards PS 
U-11 Girls - Nsaasi PS 
U-13 Boys - Kihande PS 
U-13 Girls - Luwero Boys 
NILE REGION 
U-11 Girls - Kamuli Girls PS 
U-11 Boys - Kamuli Boys 
U-13 Girls - Bugabwe PS 
U-13 Boys - Bugabwe PS 
WESTERN REGION 
U-13 Boys - Kyanjuki PS 
U-13 Girls - Bulembia PS 
U-11 Boys - Kitiiri PS 
U-11 Girls - Kyanjuki PS 
EASTERN REGION 
U-11 Girls - Yoweri PS 
U-11 Boys - North Road PS 
U-13 Girls - Mudakori PS 
U-13 Boys - Yoweri PS 
KAMPALA REGION 
U-11 Girls - East Kololo PS 
U-11 Boys - Naguru Infant PS 
U-13 Girls - Nagalama Mixed PS 
U-13 Boys - Entebbe Jnr. Sch.

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Mukasa charms Lugogo crowd with Super Over heroics in semis

With cash prizes at stake, fun tournaments are usually more competitive than organisers can anticipate.

That competitiveness was on show on Tuesday as Patidar Universal and Pak Coin required a Super Over to be separated in the first semifinal of the Night Cricket tournament.

Roger Mukasa was once again the difference between the two teams scoring 20 runs in the Super Over as Patidar claimed a four-run victory and a place in Saturday’s final.

After winning the toss and deciding to bat first, the game seemed to have drifted away from Patidar after being bowled out for 89 runs.

More lackluster batting from Pak Coin, however, ensured they were bowled out for the same score.

It was then that Mukasa took charge of the game. After conceding 16 runs in the Super Over, Mukasa had the last laugh, scoring 20 runs including a mighty six over the screen on the final ball that ensured a four -run victory.

For Patidar captain Nirav Patel, the passion shown by both teams was the night’s biggest highlight.

“It does not really matter who the winner is because both teams deserved the victory,” Patel said with more relief than delight after the game.

The moderate crowd on show will hope Jinja Keshwala and UWS put up a similar show when the two sides meet in the second semifinal today at Lugogo Oval.

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