Barry Silah @obel_barry
Stray Lions continued their good start to the season by claiming the biggest scalp in defending T20 champions Swamibapa whom they beat by six wickets in Nairobi Provincial Cricket Association fixture at Nairobi’s Jaffrey grounds on Sunday.
Despite Swamibapa winning the toss and selecting to bat, the efficient Lions did just enough in the chase to emerge victorious. The first innings saw the age old club only set a score target of 149/7 in their allotted overs with opener Naman Patel (41 off 27 balls) falling shy of the half-ton mark.
Patel was beginning to assert himself in the game before Shatsav Patel’s glorious delivery got to the end of the bat only for Ugandan Roger Mukasa to have an easy catch and send Patel out.
The Lions were much disciplined in the manner in which they restricted the Swamis batsmen as the latter began crumbling at the crease with the drop of key wickets.
Shasha Patel and Prashant Srinivas were the destroyers for the defending NPCA 50 over Premiership champions when they collectively orchestrated the fall of five wickets. For Swami, only Maurice Ouma (36 off 32 balls) was the decent run getter.
On resumption, the Lions deployed an all-out-attack formula led by Sajay Thaker (52 off 49 balls) and Roger Mukasa (32 off 21 balls) to try and play catch up while protecting their wickets at the same time.
Despite lacking big guns like Shem Ngoche and Collins Obuya, who are on international assignment, the visiting team were a determined lot. Elijah Otieno and James Ngoche were some of the Swami players who picked wickets but that could not prevent their opponents from reaching their target of 152/4 at close of overs.
Meanwhile, fifth-placed Kongonis continued to impress when they beat hosts Ruaraka by six wickets. Chris Childs and Tony Ochien’g combined for 91 runs including 11 boundaries as they posted 143/4 on the board in the second innings.