KAMPALA- They didn’t have gold medals draped around their necks as they returned home from Kigali, Rwanda yesterday morning. But they were still a jolly lot and there no signs that the nine-hour voyage from the Rwandan capital had taken its toll on them.
Don’t forget that they had been competitive units in each of the bumper-to-bumper fixtures of the Kwibuka Cricket For Peace T20 Tournament over four days.
Their ‘innocent’ smiles and faces were just a true reflection that amidst the debacle that the Cricket Cranes crumble from Division III to IV of the International Cricket Council (ICC) echelons in World Cricket League (WCL), cricket was is still in a good place in Uganda.
The Schools Combined XI (named Uganda U-19s by the organisers), finished runners-up after falling to a full-strength national women side of Kenya by 18 runs in the final played at Kicukiro Oval on Sunday.
The Ugandans, however, received a rousing applause from the other teams and Kenya as they stepped onto the podium to receive their silver medals from Rwanda Cricket Association (RCA) chairman Eddie Balaba. Their multi-faceted top order batter Immaculate Nakisuyi was crowned top batsmen after she garnered 91 runs with a high score of 51 against her countrymates – The Uganda U23s Women.
“We showed what we can do,” said Yusuf Nanga, who coached the U-23 side. “The girls exhibited a lot of game awareness and some of them have raw skills that if honed will make them even better players. And our younger side even took the Kenya women to the cleaners in one of the games. Many positives for us from Kigali.”
The Uganda Schools Combined XI tore the form book to shreds when they beat everyone put before them in the round-robin phase.
KWIBUKA CRICKET FOR PEACE TWENTY20
Kenya 87/9 Uganda U-19s 69/10
(Kenya won by 18 runs)
Uganda U-23s 113/7 Rwanda 78/10
(Uganda U-23s won by 35 runs)
Woman of Series: – Margaret
Banja of Kenya (121 runs & 3 wkts)
Best Batswoman: – Immaculate
Nakisuyi of Uganda (91 runs)
Best Bowler: Edith Wanjiru of
Kenya (9 wickets)
Best Fielder: Saidat Kemigisha of
Uganda (4 dismissals)