The 2021 Nairobi Cricket League inaugural T20 tournament finally bowled off today at the Nairobi Gymkhana after a couple of false starts from the earlier scheduled 15th September start.
The Nairobi Hornbills and Machakos Vultures produced a thrilling curtain raising performance that ended in a super over with the home team coming out on top in just three balls, chasing five for victory.
Joseph Onyango starred for Machakos Vultures with a 38 – ball 36 after picking 2/34 from his entire allotment in the first innings but that was only enough to get his team down to a tie, the scores evened out on 120 runs at the end of the second innings.
Elijah Otieno was like spring chicken for the Vultures with a mean 3/3 off his three overs, including the prize wicket of Zephaniah Arinaitwe who was caught by Joseph Onyango off the very first ball of the innings.
Stephen Obuya (20) and Sachin Bhudia (23) put together a second wicket partnership of 38 runs before Udara Jayasudera spun 2 in 2 to claim Obuya and Mohit Jhawa for a golden duck.
Bhudia went on to push the score to 71 runs before falling to Neville Madziva in the 12th over, the Zimbabwean coming back to trap Darsh Panchani leg before wicket in the penultimate over of the innings for a second ball duck which wrapped up the innings with four balls to spare.
In reply, Christopher Mpofu and Mohit Jhawa combined 3 wickets – a – piece for the Hornbills to ensure that the Vultures only returned four double digit figures.
Machakos fell in packs, with the highest wicket partnership being just 25 runs for the fifth between Onyango and Madziva (11). Onyango hit three boundaries and two maximums before being caught by Dennis Musyoka off Zimbabwean icon Christopher Mpofu in the 14th over. Jhawa, in only his second match in the country after making his debut for Shree Cutchi Leva Patel Samaj (SCLPS) ‘A’ over the weekend wrapped up the match by restricting Darshan Trivedi to 21 runs off 24 balls and trapping skipper Elijah Otieno leg before to return 11 runs.
In the super over, Mpofu restricted the Vultures to just four runs, claiming Trivedi for two runs before Joseph Onyango was run out for a solitary run in the last ball of the innings. It only took the Hornbills three balls to chase down the target via Jhawa’s boundary despite Otieno claiming the wicket of Rupasinghe with his first ball.
Shem Ngoche’s Kisumu Cranes host Morris Ouma’s Eldoret Hawks in the morning fixture while Collins Obuya attempts a second win against Nehemiah Ngoche’s Nakuru Flamingoes tomorrow at the same venue.