Hong Kong To Host First Round Of The World Challenge League

Hong Kong have been ear marked as hosts of the first of three rounds of the newly created World Challenge League. The World Challenge League was created to replace the old World Cricket League Division format with the premise that associate nations will be to get more playing time. 

The World Cricket League Div 3 tournament in Oman in 2018 Uganda was place in Pool B of the World Challenge League alongside neighbours Kenya, Italy, Bermuda, Jersey and Hong Kong. The six nations will get a chance to play over 15 ODIs against each other over 30 months will the team at the top of the table at the end of the round robin format going on to compete for a shot at the 2023 World Cup with the top associates. 

The Cricket Cranes have had a forgettable international experience since 2017, apart from the success in Malaysia in 2018 when they won the Div 4 title they have failed to put up a credible performance in any other international competitions. The ICC Africa T20 World Cup qualifier in Kampala was the last competition for the cricket cranes where they missed out on qualification for the next round of qualifiers finishing a dismal fourth out of the six nations. 

Steve Tikolo has a lot of work to do with the team ahead of the first round in Hong Kong, with some experienced players opting out of selection due to work and family commitments he will need to fast track apt of young players into the side. 

The first round of the World Challenge League will be held from Nov 25th to Dec 10th. Home side Hong Kong has made changes to its technical bench with Irish Legendary fast bowler Trent Johnson appointed as captain. 

The Cricket Cranes also started non residential training under the guidance of Steve Tikolo and his assistant Jackson Ogwang. A squad of 26 players was invited to start training which will be cut down to 18 at the end of he 1st month of training. 

By Denis Musali 

Aziz Damani eye first silverware of season

The fraternity may still be healing from hosts Uganda’s failure to make the coveted top two places at the ICC Africa Men’s Twenty20 Regional Finals.

And notwithstanding the on-going ICC ODI World Cup on television, there is already cricket again on the local menu with the UCA Divisional Twenty20 Tournament set to climax today.

The Divisional T20 showpiece was primarily put in place to get players ready for the now concluded Africa T20 Cup.
Nonetheless, three teams are left in the fray, eager to take this Division One title with Aziz Damani waiting for either KICC or Challengers in this afternoon’s final at the University Oval in Kyambogo.

KICC and Challengers meet first in the tournament’s third eliminator this morning to determine who plays the final against star-studded Damani.

For KICC, they are eyeing to lift their first silverware since winning the Sixes Challenge in 2015.
“We have a chance to do so,” said KICC captain Hanumant Kaktar who has amassed 20 wickets thus far.
KICC has had quite a number of close shaves to trophies with the latest being the 31-run loss to Damani in the Unimoni T20 Cup final on December 9, 2018.

Katkar has since reinforced with the inclusion of Cricket Cranes’ all-rounder Deus Muhumuza and Lawrence Ssempijja who has 18 wickets. Wassim Butt leads their batting with 312 runs from 13 innings.
But Challengers are faring badly. Their last trophy success came in this format, winning the 2017 T20 Cup final against Damani early last year.

And now, chinaman Henry Ssenyondo leads their bowling attack with 19 scalps while Gerald Mubiru has 15. With the bat, Kamal Shahzad has 310 runs in 10 innings.

But the victor here faces a tall order to stop Damani who are eyeing their first trophy of 2019.
Since being formed four years ago, Damani has won the 2015 Night Cricket, Kishor Pabari T20 Memorial and Division Two League honours in 2016, Super Cup and Division One League in 2017 plus the League and T20 double last year.

The hunger remains abound. “We are ready to face any team,” skipper Ghulam Hunzai offered, “The team has good balance and we just need our main players to show up,” he said.

The team’s star player is Saud Islam who leads the batting and bowling charts with 346 runs and 21 wickets from 12 matches. Roger Mukasa also has 340 runs in 8 innings while Fred Achelam has scored 317 runs in 11 innings.

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Unbeaten Uganda, Zimbabwe chase first slot to final

The two unbeaten sides; Uganda and Zimbabwe, at the on-going International Cricket Council (ICC) Africa Women’s Twenty20 World Cup Qualifier clash in crucial encounter at the Wanderers Affies Oval today in Windhoek, Namibia.

Victory for either sides will not guarantee either of the sides a ticket to the global qualifying showpiece where the winner of the Africa Qualifying Event will meet other ICC regions winners including; Europe/Americas (Scotland & Netherlands), East Asia Pacific (Papua New Guinea) and two ICC Full Members (Bangladesh & Ireland).

But it will be one step closer to the coveted global qualifier scheduled for later this year or in early 2018 because the winner of today’s game will earn direct ticket to the Saturday’s all-important final.

The loser today will have a chance to still reach the final but fatigue and injury could halt their progress as they have to play an extra game – against the winner of the Namibia – Kenya encounter which will be the day’s curtain raiser.

“It is going to be a very tough game,” Lady Cricket Cranes coach Grace Mutyagaba, said after his team’s nets session yesterday. 
“But we know what to do. We must take it easy and embrace the game’s basics. I believe whoever shows willingness to exhibit them and hunger will carry the day.”
It will be a battle between Uganda’s clinical bowling and Zimbabwe’s power hitters.

The Ugandan sextet of Joyce Mary Apio, Rita Musamali, Stephanie Nampiina, Franklyn Najjumba, Consy Aweko and Gertrude Candiru run into the quartet of Zimbabwe’s polished batters; Ashley Ndiraya, Modester Mupachikwa, Chipo Mugeri and Precious Marange.

Uganda and Zimbabwe have six points apiece and none of them can slip to third whereas Kenya and Namibia are stuck on two and whoever finishes third will play the loser between the top two teams on the log. 
The loser will play Tanzania in the fourth-place playoff on Friday morning. Five teams are in the fray at this African showpiece.

By INNOCENT NDAWULA & DARREN ALLAN KYEYUNE

First Lady pledges government backing for World Cricket League

Having been a ‘victim’ of the International Cricket Council (ICC)’s security drive, with global showpieces being taken away from Uganda twice, Uganda Cricket Association (UCA) is ensuring they are not third time unlucky.

In August 2010, ICC Security Manager Sean Carroll from Australia ruled against Uganda hosting a must-win Intercontinental Shield match against Namibia following two bomb blasts that rocked Kampala on July 11. Uganda went on to comprehensively lose that first-class match by 10 wickets in Windhoek.

Then in October 2014, UCA looked on helplessly as more games were taken away from them with two ‘powerful’ participating nations USA and Bermuda allegedly at the forefront of pressurising ICC to change venue. Both countries from the ICC Americas Region insisted that Uganda was not safe to host the ICC World Cricket League (WCL) Division III tournament, once again citing insecurity because of the Al-Shabaab terror alerts then.

In the end, the alerts turned out to be mere scares and justice was served as Uganda finished second at the meet hosted by Malaysia and forthwith progressed to Division II.

Current state
Since ICC Development and Cricket Operations Officer Nigel Mascarenhas wrote to UCA on November 20 revealing that Uganda’s bid had bettered that of Canada and Malaysia to host this year’s event, UCA are seizing every opportunity to make it count this time.

When ICC sent two of its officials Sean Norris (Security Manager) and Gurjit Singh (Development Events Manager) on a four-day working visit last week, UCA worked overtime to ensure the pair give a good review of Uganda when presenting the final reports to their bosses in Dubai, UAE.

UCA chairman Richard Mwami pulled the strings further by squeezing in a ‘priceless’ meeting between the ICC officials with the Minister of Sports and Education Janet Museveni at the State House in Nakasero last Friday.

The First Lady has now pumped up the volume in the cricket fraternity with a couple of tweets on her social media page to prove that UCA have government’s full backing to pull off a successful event.

“The ICC delegation was in the country to ascertain Uganda’s sustainability to host the WCL Tournament,” read one of her tweets.

The one that went viral goes: “We’re ready to host the ICC tournament and we want to see cricket in Uganda revived. Uganda can be banked on to host the tournament.” Prior to meeting Minister, Norris and Singh also met the Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda, Assistant Inspector General of Police (IGP) Andrew Sorowen alongside several security firms and visited social amenities like Nakasero Hospital plus inspecting the three ovals; Entebbe, Kyambogo and Lugogo, where the tournament will be played.

And with the backing from the highest of hierarchies in Uganda, UCA will, now, not only be hoping to host an incident-free event but also look to successfully woo more sponsors on board to bolster the growth of the gentleman’s game here.

The upcoming tournament
Name: Division III ICC WCL
When: May 21-31, 2017
Where: Uganda
Venues: Lugogo, Kyambogo & Entebbe
Teams: Six
Nations: USA, Canada, Oman, Malaysia, Singapore, Uganda
Benefit: Top two teams progress to ICC WCL Division II

2017 ICC WCL DIV III

Participating Nations
Uganda: 5th 2015 ICC WCl Div 2
Canada: 6th 2015 ICC WCL Div 2
Malaysia: 3rd 2014 ICC WCL Div 3
Singapore: 4th 2014 ICC WCL Div 3
USA: 1st 2016 ICC WCL Div 4
Oman: 2nd 2016 ICC WCL Div 4

By Innocent Ndawula

Unbeaten Kololo SS, Jinja SS first to reach last eight

Courtesy of their results over the past three days, 2014 finalists Kololo Secondary School and Busoga College Mwiri remain firm contenders for glory at the on-going Pepsi Boys’ Schools Cricket Week.
The two nemesis sides alongside Jinja SS confirmed their places in the quarterfinals thanks to flawless streaks in the Group stages yesterday. 
First, Kololo continued to rely on opener Brian Adriko as they completed their pool phase with five wins in as many matches. 
The Senior Six student made 43* off 39 at Lugogo and later a 47-ball 54 at Kyambogo for Kololo to notch respective nine-wicket and 43-run wins over Busoga High School and Kyambogo College School. 
“We are on a roll and will not allow complacency to creep into our camp as we head into the crucial quarterfinal stage,” said Kololo coach Jackson Ogwang. 
“I know we have a day off (today) but we’ll use it to prepare and assess our next opponents.”
2009 champions Mwiri also relied on Joseph Byaruhanga’s flashing blade that contributed knocks of 82 off 50 and Ronald Opio (42 off 28) to beat coach Yusuf Nanga’s Masaka SS by 162 runs at King’s College Budo Astro Turf ground. Byaruhanga stroked another quick half century of 52 off 19 in Mwiri’s clinical seven-wicket victory over King’s College Budo at the latter’s grass wicket. 
“Once my boys keep applying themselves, no one will stop us,” said Mwiri coach Emmanuel Isaneez. Last year Mwiri and Kololo SS shared the trophy after rain washed out the highly-billed final.

PEPSI SCHOOLS WEEK - TODAY’s FIXTURES 
Masaka SS vs. Nyakasura 9am, Lugogo
BC Mwiri vs. St. James SS 2pm, Lugogo
KC Budo vs. Rwanda X1 9am, Kyambogo
Nyakasura vs. Rwanda X1 2pm, Kyambogo
Kyambogo CS vs. Agha Khan 9am, Budo Astro
St. Leo’s vs. Agha Khan 2pm, Budo Astro
Yesterday’s results - selected
BS Mwiri 211/5 Masaka SS 49/10 
Busoga HS 86/4 Kololo SS 87/1
St. Leo’s 83/10 Jinja SS 84/3

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Pioneer gun down KICC for first league victory

 

Cricket. The star-studded KICC dressing room was full of miserable faces after suffering a shock loss with their founder member, Parminder Moni, watching from the Lugogo stands.

Pioneer Cricket Club defeated Kampala Institute of Cricket Clubs (KICC) by 27 runs at Lugogo on Saturday to throw the National Women’s 40-Over League title race wide open. 
“It feels great to take our first league victory against KICC,” soft-spoken Pioneer skipper, Justine Musubika, told Daily Monitor. “Now that we have recovered from that opening defeat to Tornado B, we hope this win propels us further for future matches.” While Musubika could barely control her ecstatic teammates, misery engulfed the star-studded KICC dressing room. 
No one from the KICC camp offered a comment about the game and slowly, players left Lugogo one by one. Knowing the strength of her bowling unit, Musubika (12 off 30) opted to bat first.
Pioneer reeled at 11-2 and later 39-4 at the mercy of bowlers Gertrude Chandiru (2/18) and Gloria Adubu (3/36). However, Franklyn Najjumba struck five boundaries for the season’s highest score of 50-ball 45 and her 60-run sixth-wicket partnership with Carol Namugenyi (36 off 30) helped Pioneer to set 143 in 31.2 overs. The target proved to be unreachable when Najjumba (2/34) bowled and caught Rihanna Muteesi to leave KICC at 23-1 after six overs. 
Five deliveries later, Scovia Akello’s furniture was dismantled by Musubika (1/22) for a golden duck. 
Failure by lower-order array of batters to build on Flavia Laker (29 off 44) and Naomi Kayondo’s (21 off 35) resistance saw KICC’s innings fold at 116-9 in 27.5 overs.

National women’s 40-over league 
WEEKEND RESULTS 
Pioneer 143/10 KICC 116/10
(Pioneer won by 27 runs)
Jinja SS 180/10 Charity TF 90/9
(Jinja SS won by 90 runs)

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Tornado sign off first round with sixth consecutive win

Charity Trust Fund captain Jonathan Ssebanja saw his side’s title hopes go up in the smoke after they suffered a 79-run defeat to Tornado in a Division One National 50-Over League encounter at Kyambogo Oval on Sunday.
Charity’s were a different unit from the one that has put up solid shows in recent outings as they imploded for only 93 while needing 173 for victory that would have seen them takeover the log leadership.
“We did well with the ball and then gave Tornado’s bowlers very cheap wickets,” a disappointed Ssebanja after his side remained stuck in third with 24 points. 
Tornado lost three of the top five batsmen for ducks but a 71-run second-wicket stand between Davis Turinawe (28 off 48) and Steven Kahuma (34) renewed their hopes before spinners Henry Ssenyondo (3-29), Viraj Patel (3-26) and Derrick Bakunzi (2-17) struck. Deus Muhumuza (41 off 82) and Nsubuga (35 off 66) helped repair Tornado’s innings at the end.
RESULTS - DIVISION I
Tornado 172 Charity TF 93
DIVISION TWO
Patidar 73 KICC 77/3
Makerere Univ 122 Warriors 116
Kutchi Tigers 101 SKLPS 69
ACC 277/6 JACC 126

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