Cricket

Baby Cricket Cranes and Kenya Under-19 set to bowl off Easter Youth ODI Series

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As the eagerly awaited clash between Uganda under-19 and Kenya Under-19 approaches in the Easter Youth Series, set to kick off tomorrow at Jinja SS Cricket Oval, cricket enthusiasts brace themselves for an exhilarating spectacle.

Over the past few years, this fixture has consistently delivered electrifying performances, cementing its status as one of the premier derbies in the region.

Recalling their last encounter during the Under-19 World Cup qualifiers in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, at the Gymkhana Stadium on 28th July 2023, we witnessed a gripping battle unfold on the cricket field.

Amidst the pulsating atmosphere of Africa, resonating with cheers and silent tension, Kenya U19 and Uganda U19 clashed with youthful vigor and unwavering determination.

As the sun descended on the horizon, Kenya, having conceded the toss to Uganda, took to the crease with optimism and resolve.

However, Joseph Baguma’s early breakthrough, claiming the wicket of Brian Likavu, set the tone for a fiercely contested encounter.

Amidst the chaos, Darsh Panchani’s resilient innings showcased unwavering determination against Uganda’s formidable bowling attack.

Yet, the relentless onslaught led by Ochaya Jaffer and Mutagana Fahad proved formidable, restricting Kenya to a modest total of 79 runs.

Facing a revised target of 79 runs under the D/L method, Uganda emerged with renewed determination, hungry for victory.

However, Kenya’s Aarnav Patel emerged as the protagonist, weaving a web of spin to dismantle Uganda’s batting order with surgical precision.

Supported by Hitendra Sanghani’s mastery and Vishil Patel’s strategic variations, Kenya’s bowlers left Uganda reeling, ultimately securing victory by 23 runs under the D/L method.

As a new era of leadership unfolds, notable absentees such as captains Vishil Patel and Fahad Mutagana for Kenya and Uganda, respectively, will be missed in Jinja.

Kenya will also feel the absence of Darsh Panchani and Aarnav Patel, pivotal figures in their previous encounter.

Meanwhile, Uganda’s Ronald Omara, the top scorer in their previous clash, will not be part of the squad, offering an opportunity for emerging talents like Owili Robert and Doka Abdul Shakur to make their mark.

The Kenyan squad boasts 13 fresh faces, featuring talents such as Aditya Vekariya, Akshith Sekar, Arshdeep Kundi, Prinay Galaiya, Saijeeth Chidambaran, Shlok Saini, Yug Patel, Yuvraj Bhatyani, Dhir Patel, Fortune Masai, Yusuf Khamala Mukoya, James Githua Mwaura, and Anthony Ndungu Njuguna.

This infusion of new blood promises an electrifying encounter within the region.

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