Sikh Union's protest derails showdown with Swamibapa

By sportsnewsarena correspondent
Feb 13, 2021
  • Elijah Otieno picked two wickets against Nairobi Gymkhana for Swamibapa whose match against Sikh Union on Saturday aborted. (SNA. File Photo)

The much hyped top-of-the bill NPCA Twenty20 match between defending champions Swamibapa and Sikh Union was a no show after the home team failed to pitch up at their home ground on Saturday.

Despite pitching up at the venue, Sikh Union players failed to step on the field to protest over what they termed as mistreatment from the club’s top management.

The players and part of its technical staff alleged the club’s management did not give them the support they required to facilitate their participation in the league.

“We have decided not to play because we are not happy with how the management has been treating us since last year. We have raised a lot of concern with them but they have continued to ignore us,” said one player who sought anonymity.

The management is also alleged to have instructed the club’s security to deny their captain Nadeem Ahmed entry to the club because of failing to pay his dues.

“Nadeem was thrown out of the club by ‘askaris’ on orders from top club management. He has also been asked to vacate the house. Nadeem is being victimized for standing with the team and as his team mates, we are not going to see him being mistreated and stay back and watch,” said the player.

The players also alleged the management reneged from honoring their promises. They further alleged the management failed to give them prizes they had been promised after winning the Harilal Shah Memorial tournament in November last year and failing to offer them new contracts.

When contacted for comments, members of the club’s management said that the issue was internal and it should not be discussed in the press.

Stray Lions embarass Kongonis

Meanwhile sluggish Kongonis were bowled out for yet another low score as they made a disastrous return back home with an embarrassing seven-wicket loss to leaders Stray Lions.

Opting to bat first at the Nairobi Club, the home team were rolled over in for 76 off 15.2 overs. Shyam Sundar top-scored with 32 as the league leaders reached the target in 7.3 overs.

Eugene Maneno top scored-with 23 to be one of the only two batsmen to attain double figures. Paul Anjere made 13. Hiren Varaiya returned to the club after missing the first round matches with two wickets.

Shem Obado, Abhishek Subramanian and Shyam Sundar also picked two wickets each.

In reply, Sundar blasted 34 not out off 18 balls as Stray Lions raced to their target off just in 7.2 overs, to record their eighth straight win.

There were worrying signs from the outset when openers Angad Kholi (7) and Tony Ochieng (2) both struggled with Stray Lions opening duo of Charles Waiswa and Varaiya.

Anjere’s 13 wasn’t able to stop the visitors from dominating as two wickets fell in quick succession to reduce them to 25 for 3. Anjere and Maneno went on to add 34 for the fourth wicket but after the dismissal of Anjere to Ngoche, Kongonis inning struggled more and never recovered being dismissed for 76.

Despite the fall of wickets at such an alarming rate, Maneno survived a torrid time but grew in confidence to strike two sixes in his 17-ball stay at the crease. Sundar put on an opening stand of 36 runs with Mukasa who was run out.

He lost Neil Narvekar on five before finally scoring the winning runs with Abraham Vadada who scored 19 from 11 balls.

Swamibapa beat Nairobi Gymkhana

Karan Kaul’s batting exploits was once again in vain as defending champions Swamibapa beat Nairobi Gymkhana.

Kaul top-scored with 74 off just 45 balls and shared crucial partnerships as his side struggled with the bat managing only 123 a target that Swamibapa reached with nine wickets in hand.

It was the second time that Kaul saw his inning go in vain, a repeat of last week's debacle against leaders Stray Lions.

“It’s always a tough thing to digest. Seeing your side struggling with the bat as it happened today makes one wonder what is wrong with the team. The same thing that happened today is exactly what happened last Sunday,” Kaul said.

Veer Dave was the other batsman who managed to get to double figures with 19 runs.

“Standing on one side and seeing wickets falling as they fell today makes you as a batsman demoralized. But all said and done this is what one should expect when you play a season side like Swamibapa,” he added

Kaul smashed five fours and two sixes before falling in the last over to Saumil Patel with the board on 109.

Swamibapa bowlers, Nehemiah Odhiambo, Elijah Otieno, Lameck Onyango and Saumil all picked two wickets each.

Maurice Ouma (56 not out) and Naman Patel (59 not out) struck an unbeaten second wicket stand of 109 to seal a nine-wicket victory with 28 balls to spare.