Good. Could be Great.
With arguably the best bowling attack on the African continent, Uganda were well into this competition to reach the final, only to be let down by a couple of key moments against Kenya. It’s happened before: getting close, then a lapse of concentration in the field. That key aspect is stopping this good cricket team from being a great one.
The loss against Kenya effectively kept Uganda out of the final and were destined to fight for third place, which they duly won. Nothing wrong with third place in this company but one feels they should have been playing in the final.
- Rwanda (Uganda by 6 wickets)
- Kenya (Kenya by 3 wickets)
- Tanzania (Tanzania by 5 wickets)
- Nigeria (Uganda by 9 wickets)
- Brazil (Uganda by 84 runs)
- Germany (Uganda by 167 runs)
- Botswana (Uganda by 9 wickets)
- Third place: Rwanda (Uganda by 8 wickets)
Kevin Awino not only top scored for Uganda with 253 runs, she was the leading run scorer for the tournament in what was a breakthrough series for her with the bat. Her leadership at the top of the order finally gives this often misfiring batting line-up some real stability.
Gloria Obukor had a key innings against Germany and was in the top ten batters, but was let down by a lack of consistency. Uganda’s top allrounder, Janet Mbabazi was a good contributor down the order. She has a good cricket brain and knows how to read a situation and bats accordingly. The lack of form from key batter Rita Musamali is a concern. If Rita finds form then this batting line-up looks very good indeed.
Four of the top five wicket takers in the tournament were from this team. It is an excellent bowling attack.
They have pace up front with Evelyn Anyipo who is bowling as well as ever and also contributes handy runs with the bat. Her pace and bounce can be unnerving to batters. Consistently the best pace bowler for the team. Patricia Malemikia was also troublesome and will only improve. These two are arguably the best opening pair on the continent and a pleasure to watch in action.
There’s more pace with allrounder Janet Mbabazi who finished sixth highest wick taker. Having such a class player to follow up the openers is gold and she’s such a player who loves to be involved in the action. Little wonder she scores so many trophies.
Mesmerizing spin from Consy Aweko and Sarah Akiteng. Consy is such a cunning bowler, always thinking, always looking for wickets. She’s Uganda’s leading wicket taker of all time. No surprise there. Sarah is young and constantly improving with every game. The tall left-arm spinner rounds out this excellent attack.
The Achilles Heel… this team is one of the most enthusiastic you’ll ever see. Great throwing arms from the deep, good catching. So keen are they that they often chase the ball in groups and herein lies the problem. They need to call. Someone will cop a serious injury one day because all eyes are on the ball.
Another issue is the lapse of concentration mentioned above. It happened in Nepal, a series they won 3-2 but should have won 5-0 and it happened here against Kenya. There are periods where the team switches off and it allows the opposition a window to victory. Fix that and we go from good to great.