There is no better way Team Uganda’s coach Francis Otieno would have wanted his side to start the UAE International Women Twenty20 Cup.
The Lady Cricket Cranes started off at the invitational event with a convincing 87-run win over Oman at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium yesterday.
“It was a good game,” delighted senior player Franklyn Najjumba told this paper via phone. By then, the mood was a jovial one back in camp at Hotel Holiday International.
While Otieno will have to find solutions to a mid-order collapse, the Kenyan tactician will particularly be impressed with the team response.
Skipper Barbara Mukankusi’s three boundaries in an opening knock of 23 off 32 hardly got support from six batters on the order as Omani bowling trio Saya Channa (2/20), Sajina Rajesh (2/38) and Akshadha Gunasekar (2/21) enjoyed fine spells with the ball.
Uganda was reeling at 71-6 not until Najjumba and Carol Namugenyi walked onto the crease. The pair combined well for a 65-run partnership with 35 runs off 32 deliveries coming off Najjumba’s bat.
Namugenyi had 23 runs off 24 balls and 29 bowling extras had Uganda pile 126-7. The Ugandan fielding innings began with verve and put Oman in a tight spot at 5-3 after 5.5 overs courtesy of Namugenyi.
She snared outstanding figures of 4/3 and two maidens. That early blow set the tone as Consy Aweko (2/2) and Mackenzie Ayato (2/7) bowled out the Omanis for 39 runs. Today is rest day for Uganda but Oman takes on Kuwait in Group B.
UAE INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S T20 CUP
Uganda 126/7 Oman 39/10
(Uganda won by 87 runs)