Zimbabwe Supreme In Group A, Three Teams Fight For Remaining Spot In Last Four

Queentor Abel and her captain Esther Wachira featured in a purposeful partnership before the heavens opened. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

Team effort gives hosts Uganda a second successive victory over Namibia

Nigeria’s resilience pays off in a rain-shortened game against Rwanda

Zimbabwe top Group A after 9-wicket win against Tanzania

Kenya defeated Botswana to finish third in Group A

ENTEBBE, Uganda- The International Cricket Council (ICC) Women’s T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier in Uganda is effectively into the business end even before the coveted semifinal stage that is scheduled for Saturday, 16th November.

The allure of going to play in the Middle East and possibly at the main event in September next year in the sub-continent – Bangladesh – is surreal, with each of the teams fancying their chances.

Kenya’s Queentor Abel in her bowling stride as Botswana Gaobilwe Matome looks on. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

Matchday Four and Five of the events had intermittent rains hovering over the lakeside Entebbe Cricket Oval but they only lasted for a short while as cricket reigned supreme with all four matches completed.

Two Group A teams; Zimbabwe and Tanzania have sealed their places in the last four with Uganda having one foot in the coveted stage in Group B, which remains largely open with both Namibia and Nigeria still with a chance.

Female Yellow Greens stay alive

Zimbabwe captain Mary-Ann Musonda was in fine fettle in her knock of 33. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

On Matchday Four – 12th December, Nigeria all-rounder Peculiar Agboya, made the difference for her side to stay alive with a 3-run win over Rwanda courtesy of the Duckworth, Lewis & Stern (DLS) Method.

In what is emerging as one of the continent’s fastest-rising rivalries, Nigeria and Rwanda engaged in a thrilling encounter during Game 7, lifting the spirits on a damp and cold morning.

Both teams, coming off defeats in their opening matches, faced a critical win-or-bust clash. Notably, this was the first time these friendly foes competed on neutral ground, having previously battled in Gahanga, Kigali, Abuja, and Lagos.

Despite Rwanda’s higher global ranking at 25, just five places above the Female Yellow Greens, the two squads were evenly matched on paper. Opting to bat first after winning the toss, Rwanda struggled to assert control, posting 88 for 9 in 20 overs. The Nigerian fielders displayed exceptional energy and put their bodies on the line to thwart the opposition.

Precious Marange picks her player of the match award from a travelling Zimbabwe Cricket Board Member. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

Key players Gisele (3) and Henriette Ishimwe (4) were dismissed early, and Rwanda’s best partnership came from the fifth-wicket stand between top scorer Clarisse Umutoniwase (18) and captain Diane Marie Bimenyimana (17). However, Nigeria’s all-rounder Peculiar Agboya played a pivotal role in restricting the Rwandans, achieving her career-best bowling figures of 3 for 13 in 4 overs.

With threatening clouds and the heavens poised to open up, both technical teams’ eyes were firmly fixed on the DLS Method sheet and constantly engaging their respective players.

Rwanda, with young spinner Rosine Irera (two for 4 in 3) weaving a web of deception in her three-over spell, had Nigeria at 16 for 2 in 4.1 overs.

However, 17-year-old Agboya calmed the storm with an industrious 17-ball 19, targeting captain Bimenyimana (0 for 25 in 3 overs), with four well-executed boundaries to turn the tide. Her exit gave Rwanda some hope but Lucky Piety (8* off 19) left nothing to chance.

It was Christabel Chukwuonye (7 off 6) who delivered the final blow with a boundary off the last delivery, bowled by Marie Jose Tumukunde (2 for 12), the weather gods could allow at 10.3 overs.

As the ICC umpires Percival Sizara and Patrick Makumbi called for the covers, Rwanda exited with a sense of disappointment, while the Nigerian dugout stood up to applaud Piety and Chukwuonye for securing the three-run win via DLS. This victory keeps Nigeria hopeful of a semifinal slot as they prepare for their upcoming clash against Uganda on Thursday afternoon.

Uganda on the brink

Rwanda’s travelling fans cheer on their team before the heavens opened. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

The second clash on Matchday Four saw a collective team effort push Uganda into the semifinals after they secured a 4-wicket triumph over Namibia in Group B.

Victoria Pearl’s captain Concy Aweko assumed a commanding role from the onset, winning the pre-match toss and electing to field, putting the Namibians in to bat.

Aweko displayed exceptional cricket acumen, making bold bowling changes to curtail the progress of Sune Wittman (17), Yasmeen Khan (15), and Jurriene Diergaardt (11), shifting the momentum in Uganda’s favor.

Stepping in as the second change bowler, Aweko further tilted the game with a remarkable four-over spell, claiming three wickets for 16 runs, including 13 crucial dot balls. Lorna Anyait, the youngest player at 16, complemented Aweko’s efforts, securing three wickets of her own as Namibia was bowled out for 92 runs in 19.5 overs.

Facing a challenging situation at 72-6, Aweko, entering at number 8, alleviated the pressure with an unbeaten run-a-ball 11, which included the winning boundary in the penultimate over, to steer Uganda to victory.

Uganda captain Concy Aweko receives her Player of the Match Award from National Council of Sports official David Katende Ssemakula. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

Namibia’s skipper, Irene Van Zyl, acknowledged the insufficiency of their total for a second tournament win, emphasizing the need to battle for a second-place finish in their upcoming match against Rwanda.

Despite choosing to field first after winning the toss, Uganda encountered pressure during the powerplay, with Irene Alumo’s opening over going for 12 runs. Namibia seemed in control with 36 runs in the powerplay, but they faltered, reaching 62-5 at 11.5 overs after Wittmann was caught by Immaculate Nakisuyi off Janet Mbabazi (1/14). Kayleen Green’s 29-ball 22 provided some relief, but they still set a below 100 targets.

Van Zyl slowed down things as she tried to defend her team’s score of 92 and got immediate rewards as Uganda started slowly at 28 for 2 in 5.5 overs. Victoria Hamunyela (three for 14) rattled Uganda’s top order at 44 for 4 in 9.4 overs with Kevin Awino (13), Proscovia Alako (7), Stephanie Nampiina (4), and Mbabazi (10) all dismissed.

Ritah Musamali, who once again impressed with the ball earlier with figures of one for 16 in 3.5 overs, struck 16 runs and Nakisuyi added 10 in a fifth-wicket partnership of 26 off 29 balls that allowed the Ugandan innings a huge sigh of relief before another youngster Malisa Ariokot (10 not out), sealed victory with Aweko with an unbeaten 21-run combo for the seventh wicket.

Uganda remains unbeaten and leads Group B with four points but cannot afford to rest on their laurels when they take on Nigeria in the last group tie on Thursday afternoon with the group still mathematically open.

Kenya avoids relegation

Peculiar Agboya snared some scalps with the ball. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

Matchday Five came with its trials and tribulations with the four Group A teams in the fray.

In a crucial Game 9 that marked the end of their campaign, Kenya secured a 20-run victory against Botswana via the DLS Method, effectively avoiding relegation to the Africa Division II.

This triumph served as a perfect consolation for Kenya, who arrived in the Pearl of Africa as the Division II champions but faced challenges due to significant changes in their squad, with many senior players replaced by rookies.

Opting to bowl after winning the toss, Kenya’s bowlers limited Botswana to a score of 52 for 8 in 20 overs. Youngster Pako Mapotsane (11) was the only Motswana to reach double figures as Kenya captain Esther Wangare Wachira, Queentor Aoko Abel and Melvin Khagoitsa shared eight wickets.

In the chase, Kenya stayed in control as they reached 34 for 1 in 6 overs before rain intervened. Player of the Match Abel was in the groove with an unbeaten 21 alongside her skipper Wachira (7*) as Kenya avoided relegation.

Botswana will now return to the second division, aiming to regroup and make a strong comeback in future qualifiers.

Zimbabwe supreme in Group A

Rwanda walk off dejected after knowing that they were behind on DLS. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

In the group’s battle for supremacy, Zimbabwe asserted their dominance with an emphatic 9-wicket victory over previously unbeaten rivals, Tanzania. The Lady Chevrons, who had already secured a spot in the semifinals, delivered a ruthless and clinical performance, showcasing their prowess in both bowling and batting departments.

Opting to bowl after winning the toss, Zimbabwe’s bowlers, led by the Player of the Match Precious Marange, were relentless and precise. Marange’s exceptional spell of three wickets for 13 runs set the tone for an impeccable bowling display. The entire bowling unit, including Kelis Ndhlovu and Ashley Ndiraya, played their part in restricting Tanzania to a meager total of 82 all out in 19.5 overs. Legendary Fatuma Omary Kibasu (22) and new captain Neema Justine Pius (21) were the only notable contributors for Tanzania in an otherwise mediocre batting performance.

Chasing the modest target, Zimbabwe’s batters exhibited class and composure. Captain Mary-Ann Musonda led from the front with a commanding innings of 33, providing a solid foundation. Modester Mupachikwa (22*) and Chipo Mugeri-Tiripano (25*) ensured a swift and efficient run chase. Zimbabwe reached the target with 9 wickets in hand and an impressive 30 balls to spare, underlining their dominance in the contest.

Nigeria Cricket Federation president Uyi Akpata hands over the Player of Match Award to all-rounder Peculiar Agboya. PHOTO/ ICC WOMEN’S T20 WORLD CUP AFRICA QUALIFIER

The victory confirmed Zimbabwe’s status as the top team in Group A, securing bragging rights and sending a strong message to their potential semi-final opponents. The clinical performance by both the bowlers and batters reaffirmed their pre-event tag as favorites.

Despite the loss, Tanzania’s captain, Neema Justine Pius, referred to the encounter as a ‘practice match’ for their upcoming semifinal, highlighting the anticipation and intensity surrounding the crucial stages of the tournament.

The last group fixtures on the card today have Namibia battling for a semifinal spot against Rwanda whereas Uganda engages Nigeria knowing they have one foot into the last four barring an unlikely massive defeat in the afternoon in front of their partisan fans that have been regular throughout the week in Entebbe.

On a day packed with action, the competition promises no dull moments.

Follow all the action live through HOME – ICC


Game 7 – Nigeria v Rwanda

Rwanda won the toss and elected to bat

Rwanda 88 for 9 in 20 overs (C Umutoniwase 19, D.M Bimenyimana 17, M Uwase 14; P Agboya three for 13, L Piety two for 13)

Nigeria 49 for 4* in 10.3 overs (P Agboya 19; L Piety 8*; R Irera two for 4, M.J Tumukunde 2 for 12)

Nigeria won by 3 runs (DLS Method)

Game 8 – Uganda v Namibia

Uganda won the toss and elected to bowl

Namibia 92 all out in 19.5 overs (K Green 22, S Wittmann 17, Y Khan 15; C.N Aweko three for 16, L Anyait three for 19)

Uganda 93 for 6 in 18.4 overs (R Musamali 16, K Awino 13, C.N Aweko 11*; V Hamunyela three for 11, K Green one for 8)

Uganda won by 4 wickets (with 8 balls remaining)


Game 9 – Kenya v Botswana

Kenya won the toss and elected to bowl

Botswana 52 for 8 in 20 overs (P Mapotsane 11; E.W Wachira three for 6, Q. A Abel three for 13, M.I Khagoitsa two for 6)

Kenya 34* for 1 in 6 overs (Q.A Abel 21*, E.W Wachira 7*; T Shadrack one for 9)

Kenya won by 20 runs (DLS Method)

Game 10 – Zimbabwe v Tanzania

Zimbabwe won the toss and elected to bowl

Tanzania 82 all out in 19.5 overs (F.O Kibasu 22, N.J Pius 21, P Marange three for 13, K Ndhlovu one for 11, A Ndiraya one for 12)

Zimbabwe 84 for 1 in 15 overs (M.A Musonda 33, M Mupachikwa 22*, C.M Tiripano 25*; M.H Ushanga one for 11)

Zimbabwe won by 9 wickets (with 30 balls remaining)

Day 6 Fixtures – Thursday, December 14

Game 11: Namibia v Rwanda (09:30)

Game 12: Uganda v Nigeria (01:50)

Points Table – Group A

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Points Table – Group B

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