Odoyo encouraged and excited by young player's performance

By sportsnewsarena correspondent
May 23, 2017
  • Thomas Odoyo was particularly encouraged and excited by the performance of the young players. (SNA. File Photo)

National cricket team head coach Thomas Odoyo said the recently-concluded cricket series between Kenyan sides, Oman, Singapore and Malaysia was the perfect opportunity to give new players exposure.

He added it was also good in fine tuning them with skills necessary to effectively compete at the international level.

Kenya fielded two teams Kenya-Kenya XI and Kenya Select against the three Asian countries that were using the matches to prepare for the World Cricket League Division Three tournament in Uganda.

The XI team which consisted of mostly national team players who would be playing in the ICC World Cricket League Championships against Netherlands won all their three matches .

The Select team that had a number of players who hardly play in the national team lost two matches and tied one.

While admitting that there is quite a bit of work to be done, the coach was particularly encouraged and excited by the performance of the young players.

Odoyo was careful however, not to get too carried away with new players who may have come unto the selectors’ radar.

“I think we were always looking at a core group of players that we believe we can use in our fixtures; but obviously, we have to ensure that we remain competitive throughout.”

Healthy competition

He spoke highly of the “healthy competition” created from the series. He added that he was quite grateful for players wanting to learn, wanting to develop and wanting to eventually become a part of the team.

“You could see the energy and the work-ethic. That will always serve well for our cricket, if you have young players who have that belief that they can knock on the door and eventually push their way into the team” Odoyo stated.

He was also pleased with the performances of some of the established national players. He noted that they were the ones who had match-winning performances for the team.

Collins Obuya scored two centuries in the series. The coach hoped that with the performance witnessed in the series, the players will remain consistent in the coming event.

“It was a good series because most of the things that we have been hoping for worked out. Now the attention needs to shift to consistency. We have always failed on this and we hope that we have some consistency when we get to the next assignment,” Odoyo said.

"Overall, the tournament proved very exciting and beneficial. It gave the selectors and coaching staff a great opportunity to assess where the players are in their preparation,” he added.