Champions, Kenya, Nigeria, Sierra Leone qualify for ICC U-19 World Cup final qualifier
Dare commends ICC, and NCF for the excellent organisation of the Africa Division Two play-off
Champions, Kenya and beaten finalists, Nigeria, as well as third-placed Sierra Leone have qualified for the final round of the Africa zone of the ICC U-19 World Cup qualifying series billed for South Africa next year.
They will join Uganda, Tanzania and Namibia in the event, which determines Africa’s representatives in the World Cup.
Team Nigeria proved all the bookmakers wrong by getting all the way to the final without dropping a single game in the competition held at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja.
They opened their campaign with a win over highly-rated Team Rwanda before defeating Botswana and Sierra Leone.
They went on to win their semifinal against Malawi before losing to Kenya, who also won all their games before the final.
They edged the game 90-10 and 79-10 equaling 11 runs to emerge the champions of the competition.
Speaking at the end of the competition on Saturday, the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, commended the International Cricket Council (ICC) and the Nigeria Cricket Federation (NCF) for the excellent organisation of the qualifier.
Dare praised the NCF for being a focused and strategic federation that is carrying out the vision of the government for sports development to the letter.
He said the pace and dedication of the NCF to youth development and facility upgrade are commendable, stating particularly that he is impressed with the investment in and upgrade of the twin cricket ovals at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja.
“The facility here and what it means to sports development, especially cricket is a major win for the country. I commend the NCF for its vision and investment. I also commend the ICC for the quality of administration and the trust in Nigeria to host this event.
We look forward to working with them on the development of the game in Nigeria.”
The Minister encouraged the Nigerian U-19 to bounce back from their loss to Kenya and put the lessons learnt from it to good use during next year’s Division 1 World Cup playoffs in South Africa.