Cricket Cranes: Namibia Reveal More Work For Mahatlane

Thursday, April 8
Namibia – 354/9
Uganda – 192 (44.4/50)
*Namibia won by 162 runs

While addressing his first press conference at Kati Kati restaurant in November last year, new coach Laurence Mahatlane promised to turn Uganda Cricket Cranes into a One Day International side.

After the concluded tour of Namibia, Mahatlane is well aware of how big the task he has on his hands.

The new gaffer will connect direct to South Africa for a short holiday as the remaining part of the contingent return home, silently, after that abysmal show.

On Thursday, Uganda lost the final and second game of the 50-over series by 162 runs and the side leaves Windhoek empty handed having lost the earlier T20I series 3-0. It was always going to be a tougher outing for the boys who have had a year off the oval due to pandemic, and beating a higher ranked nation in Namibia was always a big ask.

However, Uganda proved less ready for the task. On Thursday, Namibia’s opening batsman Stephard Baard proved handful for the Cranes; hitting 15 boundaries and three sixes on his way to 145 runs to propel his side to 354.

Uganda struggled with the ball taking 21 overs to get their first wicket when captain Arnold Otwani stumped Divan La Cook. The batsman had already done his damage with his 64 off 68 to leave Namibia standing at 150 then.

Needing 354, Uganda were destined to choke when Saud Islam was sent for early showers, falling on the fifth delivery of the first over.

Two more wickets of Otwani and Hamu Kayondo) left Uganda reeling at 19/3 as the top order, going out cheaply, left a big chunk for the remaining order.

Just like Saud, Kenneth Waiswa was also eliminated for a duck. Roger Mukasa, batting at five, managed 43 off 70 balls but his effort was not enough and in vain as Uganda failed to establish a lasting partnership on crease.

Riazat Ali Sha’s four wickets in both games and Ronak Patel’s ton (105) in Wednesday are the positives Mahatlane will look to build on.

It has been a frustrating outing for Saudi Islam who leaves with no run to show in both 50-over games, Hamu Kayondo has been unreliable for an opener who had seven and eleven runs on Wednesday and Thursday respectively.

Without Brian Masaba, Arnold Otwani failed to lead by example, managing five runs (two and three) in total.

The boys may have learnt a lesson or two from a tour to forget, but Mahatlane may have started contemplating on a rebuilding process ahead of the World Challenge League in Jersey later this year.



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