The 2021 Nairobi Provincial Cricket Association (NPCA) 50 – over League is shaping up into a contest separating the top from the bottom feeders.
In the Super League division, Sir Ali Muslim Club ‘A’ host newly reinstated Obuya Cricket Academy who are fresh off a welcoming stinger at the hands of Stray Lions Cricke Club ‘A’.
Sir Ali have now won two and lost two, the latest being their 8-wicket loss to Kanbis Sports Club ‘A’ last week despite having three professional all-rounders in their side, namely: Irfan Ellahi, Siddarth Mathre and Sandip Adole. Ellahi has so far been impressive with the ball while Mathre and Adole have only played a match as they look to settle into the team. Adole has already scooped the maximum number of runs in the NPCA League twice before and player of the series in the Nairobi Invitational Cricket League (NICL) and proven that he is in a class of his own.
The bowling is well backed up by Eugene Maneno and Tarandeep Singh and Abdul Rehman.
Sir Ali’s batting has looked wobbly, especially at the top, with runs coming in from Zahid Abbas in the middle, something which Sir Ali look to rectify. Gurdeep Singh and Abdul Rehman will have to stand up and be counted alongside their pros at the top, seeing as George Kamangu has been dropped for lack of runs.
Sir Ali’s paceman Eugene Maneno echoed the same and told kenya-cricket.com that the game is a must win for them. “We are backing our top order to come good and bat through the innings. We have been unstable so far because we lack the necessary foundation at the top to give the middle – lower order the necessary push to finish.”
Maneno believes that he is yet to hit his mark since he transferred to the Park Road – based side. “I have been training but I have been a bit rusty from lack of match practice but I believe this is the time to pick up speed. Having a good economy without picking wickets is not good enough at this stage and I’m ready to pick the opposition with the new ball.”
On their part, Obuya Cricket Academy may be depleted due to a player exodus during their League hiatus but they are well on their ay to rebuilding their side. They turned up for their first match with a top – heavy batting order that included Sahil Shah, Balaram Desai and the Obuya trio of Kennedy, David and Collins while Steve Biko collected the scalps stood out with the ball.