Bat­ting haunts Kenya again as fight­ing Hong Kong pre­vail

The Star (Kenya) - - Sports -

Bat­ting blun­ders con­tin­ued to haunt Kenyans as vis­it­ing Hong Kong ran away with vic­tory in the ICC World Cricket League matches.

Af­ter los­ing in sim­i­lar fash­ion against Pa­pua New Guinea in May this year, cricket fol­low­ers in the coun­try had ex­pected Kenya to rise to the oc­ca­sion against Hong Kong.

How­ever, it turnout to be a case of sur­vival and big dis­ap­point­ment as the hosts con­tin­ued to blow hot and cold in the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive se­ries.

Hopes were high on Sun­day as Kenyans com­fort­ably sat at 80 for 0 in pur­suit for 173.

How­ever, the team lost 10 wick­ets for 53 runs to rekin­dle the mem­o­ries of their dis­ap­point­ing loss to Pa­pua New Guinea, where they lost 18 runs for six wick­ets while safely on 210 for 4 in pur­suit for 250 runs.

Con­sis­tency, es­pe­cially with the bat, is an area Kenya will need to work on if they are to qual­ify for the 2018 World Cup qual­i­fiers in Bangladesh next year.

Af­ter beat­ing Hong Kong in the first match by three wick­ets on Fri­day, Kenya needed to win the sec­ond match to stay on course for qual­i­fi­ca­tion as they seek a re­turn to One Day In­ter­na­tional sta­tus.

But just as it was the case in the first match, the team failed to cap­i­talise on the good start from the open­ers Alex Obanda and Ir­fan Karim, fall­ing eas­ily in the sec­ond match.

Cap­tain Rakep Pa­tel, who was ex­pected to lead Kenya from the front af­ter a good sea­son, put on a dis­ap­point­ing show, only scor­ing four runs in two in­nings.

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