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Champions make successful run to retain junior title

Defending champions Rift Hawks successfully retained their National Junior Girls Cricket title with a commanding seven wickets victory over Flamingos at Sikh Union Club.

With the batting line-up flopping, Flamingos had only two reaching double figures while Hawks, led by national U19 team captain Quinta Aoko were set a total of 79 which they reached with 31 balls to spare.

Hawks opening pair of Aoko and Jane Kanini engaged a productive chase managing 23 runs in four overs before Kanini was stumped for six runs. Five balls later, Hawks were on 31 for 2 when Aoko was caught and bowled by Daisy Wairimu after scoring 15 off 10 balls which had two boundaries.

Aoko’s dismissal slowed down the chase with only five runs scored in four overs from Laura Atieno and Charity Tiara. But after Tiara was caught by Wairimu, the fans who had turned out to watch the action were treated to some swashbuckling attack from Veronica Abuga.

Abuga took on Flamingos’ bowling attack with ferocious reaction, knocking at least a run-a-ball in the 33 runs to her credit with four boundaries including three cover drives from Esther Wangare shoring them to the win with seven wickets to spare.

Flamingo failed with the bat as only Mary Wambui and Monica Ndambi attaining double figures from their inning. Flamingos lost Wangare in the third over before Wambui and Ndambi added 32 to set the total at 39 for 2 by the time Ndambi was caught off Teresia Wairimu’s exceptional bowling on 12 with the last ball of the 13th over.

Wambui added only one run with Jackline Adhiambo to leave them at 40 for 3 before skipper Daisy Wairimu and Wambui added on 23 for the fourth wicket.

After the dismissal of Wairimu on seven by Emily Wambui, Flamingos lost Mary Aluso and Judith Adhiambo in consecutive balls to remain at 64 for 6 before Mary Wambui saw them past 70 with Nora Awinja and then to 79 in an unbeaten stand with Leah Njeri.

Aoko praised her bowlers, led by Emily Wambui who took four wickets, for paving the way for victory and was pleased with the improvements in his team’s fielding.

“The bowlers have been through a tough moment in the whole week especially against Flamingos, but they never lost faith and kept on working harder and they finally gave us this win,” Aoko said. Nairobi representative Eves and Falcons finished in the third and fourth place respectively.

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