Nigeria beat Kenya in T-20 World Cup qualifier warm up
The male senior national team, Yellow-Green sent a message to their opponents for the six remaining slots of the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Men’s T-20 World Cup Qualifier when they handed Kenya, one of the Africa’s favourites, a shocking defeat in a Warm up match on Monday.
The Qualifier, which will be held at different venues in Dubai and Abu Dhabi at the United Arab Emirates, have Nigeria included at the expense of Zimbabwe, who were disqualified by the ICC on account of government interference in the sport’s administration.
The Nigerian team was an automatic alternative after finishing third in an African pre-qualifier held in Kampala, Uganda earlier in May. Kenya and Namibia qualified from the event to the last leg of the qualifiers.
However, the Nigerian team that has been camped for over seven weeks, including two weeks in Zimbabwe, arrived in Dubai three weeks to the event and looked charged up for the event. Their victory against Kenya on Monday has beamed the spotlight on the budding team, whose federation has received commendations for impressive grassroots development by the ICC.
Nigeria batted first scoring 152 runs for the loss of seven wickets in 20 overs. Kenya was bowled all out for 103 runs in 16 overs in the second innings with Nigeria’s Daniel Ajekun named Man of the Match with 73runs off 50balls and 4wickets in two overs.
Speaking on the event, President of the Federation, Professor Yahaya Ukwenya said, the win was reassuring given the level of preparations that had gone into the team’s appearance at the event.
“It is good to know that a lot of things are coming together for the team and it makes all of us back home very optimistic of their performance when the event starts,” he said.
Nigeria is currently ranked 38 in the world and would be having their opening match against Jersey at the Zayed Cricket Stadium on October 19, 2019. The qualifying rounds will run from October 18 to November 2, 2019.