Cricket: Disappointing Start For Nigeria At ICC T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier

Nigeria’s Yellow Greens opened their campaign at the ongoing ICC T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier in Kigali on a disappointing note with back-to-back defeats to Tanzania and Uganda at the Gahanga Cricket Oval on Wednesday.

The defeats immediately complicate Nigeria’s quest to pick the sole to next year’s World Qualifier for the 2022 ICC T20 World Cup.

In their opener against Tanzania, Nigeria’s cricket national team won the toss and elected to bat first finishing with 114 runs for the loss of 9 wickets in 20 overs.

Ashmit Shrestha led the batting score for Nigeria with 26 runs off 30 balls. Isaac Okpe added 22 runs off 23 balls, team captain Sylvester Okpe hit 18 runs off 18 balls and Sesan Adedeji weighed in with 17 runs off 20 balls.

Sanjay Thakor got 3 wickets and Salum Jumbe bagged 2 wickets for Tanzania.

Tanzania dominated the second innings, scoring runs at will and losing only one wicket after the power play to chase down the total by Nigeria, scoring 117 runs for the loss of 4 wickets in 13.1 overs.

For Tanzania, AR Patwa scored 36 runs off 24 balls, supported by K Nassoro who added 31 runs not out, off 21 balls. II Selemani added 21 runs off 15 balls, HA Chohan scored 13 runs off 7 balls with all batsmen having a strike rate of over 100.

Prosper Useni, Peter Aho, Isaac Okpe and Ridwan Abdukareem all took a wicket each for Nigeria.

Tanzania won by 6 wickets.

The Yellow Greens were much improved in the evening session against Uganda but fell victim to foul weather which enabled their opponents to claim a first win at the tournament after losing to Kenya in their opening match.

Uganda utilized 9 wickets to score 147 runs in 20 overs in the first innings and were on the verge of being chased down in by Nigeria in the second innings when rain interrupted play.

Nigeria was poised at 50 runs for the loss of 2 wickets in 9.2 overs when play was interrupted and with the weather not relenting, organisers employed the Duckworth Lewis method to determine the result of the match. In the end, Nigeria fell agonizingly short with 12 runs required for a par score meaning Uganda won by 12 runs.

The Yellow Greens are next in action against Kenya on Thursday morning before playing Uganda again in the afternoon session.