19 April 2017

East Africa: Uganda Seeks Finer Details, Kenya Begins Soul Searching

Photo: Eddie Chicco/Daily Monitor
On a mission. Kenya’s Irfan Karim and Dhiren Gondaria make a run during game two of the Easter Cricket Series .

Kampala — Team Uganda coach Steve Tikolo already stated he would love his side to clinch the Easter Cricket Series against visiting side Kenya.

With three games done, Uganda leads their eastern neighbours 2-0 following Easter Monday's gritty 27-run victory at Lugogo Oval.

"We showed a lot of character where Kenya really top of us," Uganda's captain Davis Karashani told this paper in an interview after they defended their 199 score.

Tikolo and his players know the job is not done yet in the Series as the Cricket Cranes prepare to host the ICC World Cricket League Division Three next month.

There were several pointers to pick and Uganda will not only hope to wrap up the Series but also seek finer details with bat and ball in Game Four at Lugogo today.

"We haven't played the perfect game yet. We feel we have some areas to correct. So we'll relax a bit and come out improve," Karashani stressed.

Kenyan legend Tikolo will want to see more partnerships like the rare steady opening 51-run stand between Arthur Kyobe (30 off 41) and Hamu Kayondo (30 off 63) as well as the 74-run recovery combo between Deus Muhumuza (30 off 45) and Emmanuel Isaneez (33 off 52).

With Arnold Otwan (lost his mother) and Lawrence Ssematimba (groin), and Frank Nsubuga (hamstring) the latest casualty, their voids must be properly be filled.

Game Three had a team slump from 51-1 in midway the 12th over to 91-5 after 23 overs, a clear indication of a broken bridge between the top and middle order.

While the art of death bowling was duly tested, Karashani and company ought to avoid giving away cheap runs in the field, something Tikolo echoed after Game One last Friday.

On the other hand, Kenya will hope to step on the gears and make a difference.

"We have to improve on our batting," noted veteran Collins Obuya, who leads the Series batting charts with 108 runs from three innings.

After Obuya (50 off 54) and Dhiren Gondaria (56 off 52) combined for an 83-run third wicket combo, Kenya needed 87 runs off 173 deliveries to win but they lost seven wickets in a rather fast and furious mode.

"Rather than going for big scores, we must rotate the strike and bat all the 50 Overs. My teammates should apply themselves better and stick to the basics." Obuya urged.

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