NAIROBI, Kenya, February 9 – Kenya suffered a shock 15 run loss to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in their first match of the World Twenty20 qualifiers on Tuesday.Eldine Baptiste’s side were restricted to 150-5 by the cricket minnows who set their African counterparts a target of 166 to win the match at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
UAE who won the toss and decided to bat put up big numbers through man of the match Arfan Haider (59) and Saqib Ali (31) as they took one and a half hours to reach their total of 165.
Collins Obuya was Kenya’s top scorer with 42 runs as his compatriots put up paltry scores as they chased UAE’s total.
Shadeep Silva and Ahmed Raza took two wickets each including Steve Tikolo (25) who was dismissed in the seventh over followed soon after by Alex Obanda in the tenth after he was caught leg before by Silva leaving Kenya struggling at 49-3.
UAE’s batting order managed to weather the storm caused by Nelson Odhiambo and Lameck Onyango both of whom took two wickets each as Nehemiah Odhiambo failed to replicate his devastating bowling form with only the scalp of Ali to his name.
Kenya are now last in Group B behind Canada who lost to the Netherlands by six wickets while UAE top the standings.
Maurice Ouma and company will be hoping will be hoping for victory against Canada on Thursday if they are to stand a chance of reaching the semis.