Nigeria wary of Kenya in U-19 World cup qualifier

By usher komugisha
May 22, 2013

Nigeria arrived in Kampala on Tuesday night ahead of the International Cricket Council (ICC) under-19 Cricket World Cup Qualifier that has attracted seven African countries.

The West Africans, a powerhouse in continental soccer have been Pooled in Group B with Kenya, Botswana and Sierra Leone.

Nigeria hinted that Kenya are their biggest rival.

Speaking exclusively to Wednesday after their first training session in Entebbe about 40km from the city center-Kampala, Nigeria’s head coach Seyi Sonde said, “There is no doubt that Kenya is a very strong opponent, however, cricket is a game of bat and bowl.”

Nigeria will face Botswana in their first game on May 25 in Entebbe.

Nigeria had earlier spent the day training at the grounds which is very different with what they have back at home.

“We play on astroturf back in Nigeria so we have to adjust to the grounds in Uganda. It is okay for the bowlers but the batters have to bend low to reach the ball, otherwise we are good to go for now,” explained Sonde.

Uganda in top gear

Uganda are in top gear and expect to use the homeground advantage to clinch the only remaining African slot after Zimbabwe and South Africa qualified.

“We are playing at home and we know the wickets at all the three venues (Lugogo, Entebbe and Kyambogo cricket ovals) but we shall take one game at a time,” said Head coach Davis Turinawe.

Uganda is in Pool A and start their campaign on May 25 in Entebbe against Namibia, the pre-tournament favorites.

Other teams in this pool are Zambia and Tanzania. Botswana arrived on Wednesday night while Sierra Leone is expected to arrive on Thursday morning.

Zambia and Namibia are expected on Thursday while Kenya arrives on Friday in two batches. alongside Tanzania.

The world cup will be held next year in the United Arab Emirates 

Fixtures for Kenya: May 25: Kenya vs Botswana at Lugogo. May 26: Kenya vs Sierra Leone at Kyambogo. May 27: rest day. May 28: Kenya vs Nigeria at Lugogo. May 29: reserve day in case of weather interruption. May 30, playoffs: 4th Pool A vs 4th Pool B at Kyambogo, 3rd Pool A vs 3rd Pool B in Entebbe May 31, playoffs: 1st Pool A vs 1st Pool B at Lugogo, 2nd Pool A vs 2nd Pool B at Kyambogo Saturday, reserve day. (Kampala)