Cricket Cranes handed a sobering rite of passage

Read in 2.33 mintues

Uganda’s Cricket Cranes imploded when questions were asked of them by Afghanistan in their first outing at the ICC Men’s Cricket 2024 T20 World cup: 58 all out to Afghanistan’s 183/5.

Captain Brian Masaba won the toss asking his counterpart, Rashid Khan to bat first as he intimated they could “restrict” the Afghanistan side to a modest total. On paper, it proved a more arduous task than in theory. One which required a cast-iron persistence to break the Afghan opening pair who went on a 154-run partnership before Alpesh Ramjani, delivered a breakthrough on 14.3 overs claiming the valuable wicket of Rahmanullah Gurbaz (76). Masaba picked the second prize wicket of Ibrahim Zadran’s who fell at 70.

Afghanistan weren’t always this dominant. Khan recently told ESPN Cricinfo (@ESPNCricinfo): about the secret sauce to their staying power:

In the past, we were struggling a little bit in the batting area. Later, we got those young batters, especially from the Under-19 cricket, and the way they came up to the national side, and the way they have worked hard, they got the opportunity to play for Afghanistan at a very young age and then start exploring all around the world, playing leagues where they got better and better. “

The statistics speak for themselves; Sri Lanka, Netherlands, England and Pakistan have all succumbed to their crushing power in the 50-over format in the last 2023 ODI World Cup.

Masaba will require a huge response from his batting department should they wish to etch a memorable story. Most Cricket Cranes sides that have been to the global stage have struggled with the bat than the ball. Aside from Riazat Ali Shah (11) and Robinson Obuya (14) there was very little to write about from their batting set up.

Robinson Obuya fought hard to poke in-roads through Afghanistan’s clinical bowling attack only managing a modest 14 runs ( Courtesy photo: ICC Getty image)

This is in no small part due to the hostile left-arm fast seam of Fazalhaq Farooqi. Farooqi produced a match-winning 5-9 spell combing through Uganda’s top order batsmen, Ronak Patel (04), Roger Mukasa (0), and Riazat Ali Shah (11) then returned to finish the business against the middle order. He bowled tight, and close to the body which left openers swinging amiss for most of his spells.

Ronak Patel is clean bowled by Fazalhaq Farooqi ( Courtesy photo: ICC Getty image)

His 5-9 wicket haul sits pretty alongside Anrich Nortje’s 4-7 against Sri Lanka who tumbled to a measly 77 total. There are still more games to play and possibly chances to better Ajantha Mendis’ 6-8 record from the ICC Men’s 2012 T20 finals.

In reply, Masaba called on seamer, Cosmas Kyewuta and the duo combined with neat 2/21 and 2/25 to stop the bleeding in the death overs.

Not being too harsh on this side, after all experience like greatness can’t be prised off the shelves of Capital Shoppers, rather it is a trait of process and mastery, why it is necessary for the Associate and Test sides lock horns in competitions like these.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *