The Kenya Under-19 cricket team returned home on Monday from Namibia where they had a dismal performance in the International Cricket Council (ICC) Africa World Cup qualifiers
Kenya, who represented Africa in last year's age group World Cup in New Zealand won a single match in Namibia, where they finished fifth on points table with two points.
Nigeria, who were unbeaten in all their outings topped the table with 10 points, thereby grabbing the single slot reserved for the continent in next year's Under-19 World Cup slated for South Africa in January and February.
Hosts Namibia came second with eight points, followed by Uganda (six) and Sierra Leone (four). Tanzania were last with no point. Kenya, who went to Namibia as a division one side, came back demoted to division two.
Commenting on the demotion, under-19 team coach, Jimmy Kamande said: "This was a blessing in disguise for Kenya. It will give us ample time to prepare for the 2021 qualifier for the 2022 under-19 World Cup set for the West Indies."
He added: "Nigeria were in division two and that did not stop them from qualifying for next year's World Cup."
Kamande said that his charges lacked match awareness that comes from playing many matches. He said Nigeria had prepared well for the qualifier and besides playing together as a team for a long period of time, they toured Uganda, Botswana and Zimbabwe were they played friendly matches as part of their preparations for Namibia.
"I trained the boys for five days before we left for Namibia and by that time I could not tell who could do what. I did not know how to pair the batsmen," said Kamande.
Kamande said that with good preparations, Kenya will qualify for 2022 under-19 World Cup.