Elijah Asoyo was pivotal as Kenya picked up a six – wicket win over Bermuda in their opening campaign of the Uganda leg of the ICC Cricket World Cup Challenge League B (2019 – 2022) at the Kyambogo Cricket Oval this afternoon.
The speedster picked 5/21 in 7 overs leaving the islanders to rue their decision to bat as they got wrapped up for a meagre 107 in 27 overs as the East Africans announced their return to the international stage after a turbulent two and a half years. Rightfully, he lauded his opening partner, Emmanuel Bundi, who managed 4/26 from his 8 as he won the race with the five – fer.
Carrying a solitary win from the Oman League in December 2019, skipper Shem Ngoche stated that they rejoice in the win but they’re not taking any of the other teams lightly. “We just want to go out and do the basics right and go through their processes. This win gives us great momentum and leverage going into the next match but not taking other teams lightly. We won’t get ahead of ourselves and want to take each game at a time.” Said Ngoche.
Regrouping from an earlier spell that included a combined twelve extras with a wicket-a-piece, Bundi picked three off his returning over of his second spell, to finish with 4/26 from 8 overs. That included two off two in the form of the talented Malachi Jones who fell on 18 from 15 balls and Steven Bremar (1) who only survived two balls.
The nineteenth over bowling change had Bundi claiming skipper Kamau Leverock (29 off 35) who had already survived two dropped catches while on 9 and 24 while breaking a brewing 28 – run partnership alongside Jones.
The team was devoid of four players who faced Bermuda in a rained off affair at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground in Oman on 8th December 2019 – former Swamibapa Sports Club trio of top order bat Naman Patel as well as the bowling duo of Jadavji Bhimji and current Kenya Ladies Cricket Head Coach Lameck Onyango with Dhiren Gondaria completing the quartet of absentees.
That did not stop Rushabhvardan Patel from steering the innings to finish unbeaten on 49 runs as Kenya wrapped up victory in 19 overs. Patel pit up a 25 – run opening partnership with the flashy Alex Obanda (5), who was caught by Steven Bremar off a Jabari Darell delivery that grew too big on him in the fourth over.
He added 35 runs alongside Irfan Karim (16) and a further 26 for the fourth wicket with Nelson Odhiambo (13) as wickets fell steadily. with 14 runs to win, Collins Obuya (11*) did not linger around, dispatching a six and a four in quick succession to wrap up the game.
In their next quest, Kenya face Jersey on Monday, 20th June at the Lugogo Cricket Oval from 10:00 am.