Friday, April 19, 2024

Botswana and Tanzania lock hands in ultimate bat and ball battle

Botswana men’s senior national cricket team will be savouring its chance to beat Tanzania and progress to the next round of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup qualifiers when the two meet in the ultimate ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Sub Regional Africa A Qualifier today, Sunday November 7.

Both countries have so far proved to be no match for their opponents at the ongoing Sub Regional Africa B Qualifier in Rwanda and all eyes are now on them to see who between the two will emerge the group winners and claim the only spot into the next round of qualifiers.

And if the local lads’ showing at the tournament is anything to go by, there will be no reason for them not to emerge winners at the end of the day today. So far, Botswana has proved good with both the ball and the bat, something which should be a source of delight for Batswana and the team.

After a comfortable start to the tournament that saw them easily beat Sierra Leone by 72 runs on Tuesday, Botswana followed it up on Friday with a 9 wicket win over Cameroon.

Whereas captain Karabo Motlhanka with a return of 74 runs from 58 balls, Reginald Nehonde with 35 runs from 32 balls and JWN Moses with 20 runs, the Friday rout against Cameroon came through Valentine Mbazo and Tharindu Perera.

Making his debut at the senior men’s tournament, Mbazo, who is also the team’s wicketkeeper, hit an impressive 31 off 11 balls while Perera contributed 20 runs from 15 balls as Botswana successfully chased the 51 runs score by Cameroon in 4.5 overs. Mbazo’s deftness with the bat in hand was all there to see in the fourth over as he managed a 22-run haul made of five boundaries, 4 fours and a six.

Impressive as Botswana’s batters may have been, the local bowlers, comprised mostly of leg spinners, have also been very imposing. As was in the match against Sierra Leone, it was the bowlers who set Botswana on course as they successfully restricted Cameroon to a mere 51 runs, setting the stage for batters to shine with the bat.

Nehonde, with a return of four wickets for the loss of seven runs and Dhruv Maisuria with three wickets for 11 runs, ably helped by Mmoloki Mooketsi and Thatayaone Tshose led the onslaught. Maisuria’s three wickets means the youngster has now claimed six wickets for 23 runs in the two games played thus far.

Against Sierra Leone on Tuesday, the youngster had a haul of 3 wickets off 12 balls, while Mooketsi had a return of 3 for 17.


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