Cricket Editor's Picks

Cricket Cranes Squeeze Past Kenya To Qualify For Global Qualifiers

Saturday, November 20

First Match
Tanzania – 68
Uganda – (13.5/20 ov) 74/4
*Uganda won by 6 wickets (with 37 balls remaining)

Second Match
Kenya – 123/3
Uganda – (17.4/19 ov) 118/4
*Uganda won by 6 wickets (with 8 balls remaining, D/L method)

Regional Finals Table:

  1. Uganda – 10 pts
  2. Kenya – 8
  3. Tanzania – 6
  4. Nigeria – 0

Uganda Cricket Cranes’ ascendancy in the 2022 ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifiers continued on Saturday after the side beat Kenya in a decisive nail-biter.

In a game interrupted by rain, the Cricket Cranes crawled to a 6-wicket victory with 8 balls to spare.

The result sees Uganda win the Global Qualifiers in Rwanda and hence seal a place to the Global Qualifiers next year.

This is a qualification pathway to the 2022 ICC Cricket World Cup that will be hosted in Australia next year.

It’s another impressive achievement for Uganda Cricket whose U19 side (Baby Cricket Cranes) also qualified to the U19 Cricket World Cup set to be held in West Indies next year.

Uganda had dug themselves a deep hole after falling to Kenya by just one run on the opening day of November 17.

But a win against Nigeria (12 runs DLS) in the afternoon later in the day, and two wins off Tanzania (8 wickets) and Nigeria (8 wickets) on Day two of November 18 saw Uganda revive their qualification chances.

Going into Saturday’s final games, Uganda needed to win both their games against Tanzania and Kenya to top the four-nation Regional Finals.

The Cranes made light work of Tanzania in the morning game to win by 6 wickets (with 37 balls remaining) thanks to huge part from Frank Akankwasa whose 4-10 limited Tanzania to only 68 before Simon Sessazi (39) and Deus Muhumuza (27) led the chase.

In the decisive game, that saw Kenya come into the contest on the back of a 60-run win over Nigeria in the morning game, Uganda lost the toss and asked to field first.

Rakep Patel helped Kenya recover from 29/3 with an unbeaten 62 off 46 balls to set 123.

Needing 124 to seal a ticket, it looked like an easy target for Uganda but given the past history between the two sides, there was nothing to celebrate from the Uganda camp.

Saud Islam and Ronak Patel gave away their wickets before the fifth over to leave Uganda reeling at 22/2 and Uganda had 51 after the 10th over needing a 7.30 run rate to turn the tables.

More drama arrived midway through the 15th over when the clouds opened, and Uganda were lagging by a run or so if DLS method was applied to determine the result of rain persisted.

Fast forward, the target was revised, and Uganda needed 35 runs in 27 balls to seal the sole ticket.

Riazat Ali Sha, player of the match, hit Sam Ngoche for four on the first delivery and picked three more runs on that over as Uganda showed early intent on resumption of play.

And Riazat (43) held on with Dinesh Nakrani (28) on to the crease to drive Uganda to the finished line.

Uganda, who started the journey with winning the Regional Qualifiers Group A, completes the Global Qualifiers puzzle and will compete with other 15 teams for the four remaining slots to the World Cup.

The Global Qualifiers have the four lowest ranked teams from the 2021 ICC T20 World Cup (Ireland, Netherlands, Oman and Papua New Guinea), the four best ranked teams not already qualified for the World Cup or qualifiers (Nepal, UAE, Singapore and Zimbabwe) ; and eight teams from Regional Qualifiers (Uganda, USA, Canada, Bahrain, Hongkong, Philippines, Jersey and Germany).

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