Familiar cricket rivalry for Kenya and Uganda

By sportsnewsarena correspondent
Jul 03, 2017
  • Dennis Musyoka bats against Botswana in a previous match. Batting could decide the result between Kenya and Uganda. (Photo by Shutterspeed)

It's time for another fiercely contested rivalries to be renewed, once again.

Another of the "not for the faint-hearted" style games which have now become a hallmark of the region when Kenya and Uganda clash.

The latest after the Elgon Cup will be at Nairobi Jafferys on Tuesday in the ICC Africa under-19 World Cup Qualifier, 2017 campaign.

Of late, the encounters between the neighbours at home, away or on neutral grounds have produced some fantastic outcomes.

Whereas Uganda’s senior record against Kenya would suggest a rather one-sided domination by Kenya until two months ago, the number of wins that Uganda have enjoyed over Kenya at the junior level is astonishing.

Ever since Kenya lost their automatic qualification slot to the ICC under-19 World Cup in 2002, they have failed to make it to the last seven events.

But, over the same period, Uganda have qualified twice in 2004 and 2006. On the two occasions, they beat Kenya to get the ticket.

Memories of the 2004 and 2006 success are still fresh and it appears Uganda are more determined than ever to continue the dominance with history on their side.

They must first beat the home team who have proved to be up to the task. For Kenya, it has been a 16-year wait.

The two sides are currently unbeaten since the start of the competition at the weekend. They have convincingly won their opening two matches against Ghana and Botswana.

Both teams keen to join Namibia

Both teams have made their intentions known sending signals they are keen to qualify at all costs and join Namibia in representing Africa at the global showpiece.

Kenya players are aware of the challenge Uganda posess in their quest for qualification and cannot not afford to take the match lightly.

Both teams' all round performances in their opening matches has proved that they are a notch higher that than Ghana and Botswana and so it will be interesting to see how approach the decider.

The batting of both sides will come to big test because in the opening two matches, the challenge in this department has barely been tested. The only scare was from Ghana.

Ghana was able to shake the top order of the two sides before the middle order stuck on to see their batting recover.

Both teams will bank on their double half centurions for a good batting display. Kenya will have Aman Gandhi who has scored 70’s in both matches to give them a good start in the inning.

Uganda will heavily bank on Ronald Opio to give them a good platform.

The bowling of the two sides has been at their best by restricting their opponents to low scores.

Here, Kenya will bank on skipper Sachin Bhudia and spin duo of Abhishek Chidambaran and Yaksh Patel to tame the Ugandans. The trio have picked 15 of the 20 wickets that Kenya has so far bagged.

Uganda will be hopeful that events highest wicket taker Trevor Bukenya will give them a good foundation of choking Kenya batsmen.

At Nairobi Gymkhana, Ghana and Botswana will be searching for their first win.