Gymkhana to host a memory match for 1996 World Cup team

By sportsnewsarena correspondent
Feb 26, 2021
  • Martin Suji and Thomas Odoyo will feature in the match to remember their historic win over West Indies.(Photo:SNA File)

Nairobi Gymkhana will on Sunday host the first ever cricket match in honor of the 1996 ICC World Cup team that beat the then 'mighty West Indies.

During the 1996 World Cup in India, the little known Kenyan cricket team shocked the world when they beat West Indies by 73 runs at the Nehru Stadium in Pune on 29th February 1996.

To honor the players, 20 years later, a T20 ‘veterans’ match’ will take place with the bulk of the participants having represented Kenya at various cricket World Cups.

"Its 20 years since we beat West Indies, If I recall well, the team was not honored and that is why we thought to have this match. We want celebrate their achievement no matter how little it will be by having them play walk into the field once again in Kenyan colors," one of the event convenors said.

Among the players expected to walk onto the pitch for the match include former captain and the man of the match in the match Maurice Odumbe. Odumbe, who picked the man of the match accolades says that he is looking forward to seeing his teammates together again on such a memorable occasion.

"That kind of a win never goes away, it is something that I will take with me to the grave. It was our first against the mighty West Indies, a team that we had always looked up to. Beating them, especially with the kind of players they had in their squad was a remarkable feat," Odumbe said.

A meeting of former captains

Other players to grace the occasion include Asif Karim, 2003 World Cup squad captain Steve Tikolo, Rajab Ali, Kennedy Obuya, Tariq Iqbal, Edward Tito Odumbe, David Tikolo, Lameck Onyango, Brijal Patel, Martin Suji and Thomas Odoyo.

Others are Peter Ongondo, David Obuya, Francis Otieno, Jimmy Kamande, Tony Suji among others.

Karim said tomorrow's match will brings with it a feeling of euphoria as the players both retired and current crop reconnect. "We expecet to have a good laugh and forge a way forward for our cricket. I hope this is just a start of good things," Karim said.

“The main aim of the match is to bring the cricket community together, more so, those who have already retired from active duty. There is still a lot they can bring back to the game,” the convenor stated.

Players: Tariq Igbal, Asif Karim, Alpesh Vadher, Kennedy Obuya, Maurice Odumbe, David Obuya, Rajesh Bhudia, Hiren Varaiya, Edward Tito, Tony Suji, Thomas Odoyo, Martin Suji, Rajab Ali, Steve Tikolo, David Tikolo, Ravindu Shah, Sandeep Gupta, Lameck Onyango, Joseph Angara, Jimmy Kamande, Peter Ongondo, Brijal Patel, Shahid Bwibo, Francis Otieno, Zafir Din, Josephat Ababu, Andrew Mboya.