KAMPALA. Olila High School Cricket Club spent the entire weekend on cloud nine after lifting the Mehta Women’s Twenty20 Premier League on the first time of asking on Saturday.
The side beat two-time champions Jinja SS by 59 runs in a much boring one-sided final at Kyambogo Oval.
“Great,” Olila team manager Felix Musana explained the feeling moments after deliver first fruits from the four-year-old Soroti Cricket Academy orchard.
“It has been an effort,” Olila coach Ivan Kakande stated. “The girls know what they want and our Soroti project is taking the right path.”
“All the hard work we put in finally paying off is priceless,” enchanted Musana, moments before taking his girls out for a drink at Legends.
Saturday was a day perfectly crafted for Olila in literally every sense. Right after senior two student Gloria Obukor (2/6 in 3 overs) stopped Pioneer at 60-6, Margaret Banja (22-run-a-ball) and Racheal Ntono (17 off 34) easily got the target in 11.1 overs to win the morning semifinal.
Yet while Olila rested, Jinja SS saw off Wanderers in the second semifinal by 23 runs after defending their 99-5 score through Stephanie Nampiina (2/5 in 4 overs) and Rita Musamali (1/15 in 4 overs).
In the past, semifinals are played at Lugogo and Kyambogo, with the latter victor moving 5km to Lugogo for the final.
Owing to the intensity in the field during matches of the shorter code, Jinja ought to have batted first after winning the toss in the final.
But instead, they unanimously opted to field first, burning out and that playing into Olila’s favour. “The team chose to field first,” Nampiina would later say.
“For me, it was about letting Olila bat first, prolong the final and give ourselves a chance,” Jinja coach Habibu Mugalula said.
The impact of fielding 38 successive overs across two matches had Olila set 110-4 in 20 overs. Between the 14th and 17th overs, Jinja gave away 44 runs, Kenyan Sarah Bhakitah getting 21* off 15. But it was her country-mate Banja (37 off 53) who had taken the game away prior with a 43-run third-wicket partnership with Gertrude Candiru (27 off 26).
MEHTA TWENTY20 PREMIER LEAGUE
Olila HS 110/4 Jinja SS 51/9
(Olila HS won by 59 runs)