Kenya Women emerge victorious in ICC - Africa Division II Qualifier

Flavia Odhiambo was the pick of the bowlers with 4/10 in 3.2 overs as Kenya Women wrapped up Botswana for just 52 runs in 14.2 overs to go on to win the ICC 2023 Women T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier – Division 2 tournament at the Botswana Cricket Association Oval 1 by 9 wickets this evening.

In reply, there could only be one better outcome for Kenya who made quick work of the chase in just 49 balls to sail through the tournament unbeaten in five matches. Daisy Njoroge remained unbeaten on a 24 – ball 26, inclusive of three boundaries while Queentor Abel added 13 off 19 to the tally before Goabilwe Matome knocked over her stumps in the 6th over to gift the hosts their sole consolation wicket.


Flavia Odhiambo was the Player of the match for her 4/10.

Fielding first for only the second time in the tournament, the Kenyan bowlers were merciless, restricting Botswana to 2/10 at the close of the power play, courtesy of the Idambo sisterhood of Lavendah and Melvin banding pace and spin to produce one - a - piece. Not relenting, the evergreen Queentor Abel spun her way to 2 wickets off 3 balls in the sixth over to pile on the misery for the hosts who were left reeling at 4/20 after 6 overs.

An attempt to rebuild by Florence Samanyika earned her the highest and the only double digit score of the innings with 22 off 23 balls but she could only add 15 runs to the fifth wicket alongside Oratile Kgeresi before Melvin Khagoitsa snapped her up as Abel’s thirteenth and final victim of the tournament. Botswana could only add 17 runs from hereon for their final five wickets, courtesy of Odhiambo’s bowling masterpiece that earned her the player of the match accolades.

Abel gifted her bowler of the match trophy to pace sensation Lavendah Idambo who rallied second with eleven wickets.

Abel finished on 3/10 off 4 overs to wrap up the tournament as the highest wicket taker with thirteen wickets from five innings. Her batting prowess at the top of the order that included a century and two half centuries earned her the top run scorer award with 238 runs and a top strike rate of 149.68 from 5 innings. Her opening partner, Daisy Njoroge, came a close second on the batting charts with 173 runs from 5 innings and the tournament's best batting average of 86.50 runs.

By virtue of winning their respective semi final fixtures, both teams qualified for the ICC 2023 Women T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier – Division 1 tournament slated for 7th - 18th December, 2023 in Entebbe, Uganda.



Kenya Women's Cricket Quest for Dominance

The Kenya Women’s Cricket team have qualified for the finals of the ICC 2023 Women T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier – Division 2 tournament that is currently underway in Gaborone, Botswana. A feat achieved by swatting away their opponents to get out of the group stage and the semi-final with a 100% - win record.

Their 6.719 record is the best in the entire tournament that comprises of eight teams, having been grouped against the hosts, Malawi and Lesotho Women. This would also account for Kenya Women’s best performance in ICC T20I events as they bounce back from a four year hiatus, occasioned by Cricket Kenya being put on notice by the International Cricket Council (ICC) coupled with Covid 19 in 2020.

Queentor Abel and Daisy Njoroge have amassed an opening partnership of 380 runs from four innings in the ongoing Qualifier. Photo Credits: Botswana Cricket Association

Moreover, they missed out on the prospect of any competitive Cricket in 2021 by virtue of there being no ICC Africa event for the Ladies to take part in with the trend extending to 2022 where Kenya missed out on the U – 19 Women’s Qualifier in Botswana in by virtue of not meeting Membership criteria.

That means that the last ICC event that the Ladies took part in was the 2019 ICC Women’s Qualifier -Africa took place in Zimbabwe. Kenya’s lone win in that tournament came in the form of a 106 – run win over Sierra Leone. They went on to record a heart-breaking loss to arch nemesis – Uganda, by 4 runs chasing 100 and got bundled out by Namibia 39 runs short of 118 for victory.

Despite the hiatus, Botswana is a familiar hunting ground for Kenya Women, having won 4 – 1 in a Series against the hosts in December 2019. Having already beaten them by a massive 111 runs in the group stage, the sole East African representatives can only pray that the tide keeps turning in their favour as it is not over until the bragging rights are safely tucked away off the busy Thika road Superhighway in Nairobi.

Queentor Abel has picked three out out of four Woman of the Match awards in the ongoing Qualifier. Photo Credits: Botswana Cricket Association

With two half centuries and a ton to her name, Kenya’s opening batter Queentor Abel, who missed out on the Botswana series in 2019 is gunning for the tournament’s M.V.P as she goes into the final topping the batting charts with 225 runs from four innings, a whopping 160.71% strike rate therein, in spite of being dismissed for just 15 runs in the semi-final against Cameroon. Her off spin has also earned her the joint top wicket taker with ten wickets alongside medium pacers Lavendah Idambo and Alice Fillie of Kenya and Sierra Leone, respectively.

Dubbed the tournament favourites by virtue of finding themselves in the spot by (bad) design, Kenya look to wrap up the tournament on a high tomorrow afternoon, both teams having already qualified for the ICC 2023 Women T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier – Division 1 tournament set for Entebbe, Uganda from 7th – 18th December.

A journey of so many odds finally takes the team back to familiar territory and incidentally, in the same country where they played their first T20I in December, 2011.


Wachira, Abel guide Kenya to Division 2 Qualifier final

Kenya Women beat Cameroon by 118 runs to qualify for the finals of the ICC 2023 Women T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier – Division 2 tournament that is underway in Gaborone, Botswana.

Kenya will face Botswana in the final on Friday afternoon, both teams effectively having qualified for the ICC 2023 Women T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier - Division 1 set for 7th - 18th December 2023 in Entebbe, Uganda.

Despite floundering at the start, Esther Wachira had a dream innings, putting in a repair job that yielded her maiden T20I half century off 45 balls in a 71 – run partnership for the fourth wicket alongside Venasa Adhiambo (32.) The skipper added a further 49 runs to the fifth wicket in the company of Melvin Khagoitsa, who finished unbeaten on 28 runs off 20 balls, in the company of her sister (Lavendah Alivitsa) for the last five balls of the innings to finish on 5/156.

Esther Wangare celebrates her half century against Cameroon. Photo Credits: Botswana Cricket Association.

For the first time in the tournament, Kenya had a shaky start, losing three wickets in the power play to have the tournament favourites at 3-32 inside four overs. Daisy Wairimu succumbed inside the ring to be the first to depart at the close of the third over for 7. Three balls later, Aboui Mbida had yesterday’s centurion Queentor Abel (15) trapped in front before upending Mary Mwangi’s stumps for a golden duck to bag two wickets in the fourth over.

Wachira was eventually dismissed with five balls to go by Olive Pienape who bowled her sole over of the innings to have the captain caught by Bernadette Aboui at cover for 51. off 46 balls.

In reply, Cameroon were dismissed for a paltry 38 runs in 14.4 runs, Abel being the star of the second innings with a five - fer that included 2 wickets off 2 balls in the fourth over and a maiden to close out her quota with 5/5. Mary Wambui picked a measly 2/4 off her three overs while Wachira snapped up the last two wickets off consecutive balls to wrap up her captain's innings with 2/5 off 10 balls.

Pienape was the only Cameroonian to manage double figures with 11 off 16 balls.

The tournament resumes for the final day on Friday with Cameroon taking on Sierra Leone in the 3rd/4th play offs in the morning and the final pitting the hosts against an unbeaten Kenyan side later on in the afternoon at the Botswana Cricket Association Oval 1.