Cricket Cranes coach Laurence Mahatlane was left to rue the misfortune that befell his team after the side’s opening bowler Juma Miyaji walked out injured during their game against Namibia at the Castle Lite Series that bowled off on Wednesday at the United Sports Ground in Windhoek.
Miyaji who missed the Continent Cup T20-Africa that took place in Nairobi, Kenya last month was returning to the team from a back injury, but the 20-year-old saw his return shortened after what appeared to be a recurring back injury.
Miyaji bowled the second Over for Uganda, but was unable to complete it as he was helped out of the pitch after bowling just four balls.
It was a clear cutback on Uganda’s manpower as they went on to lose the game by 26 runs.
“Losing Juma Miyaji earlier on was a very hard blow,” a visibly frustrated Mahatlane bemoaned.
“It most probably cost us 10 to 15 runs as our tactics didn’t work. We had to bowl Henry Senyondo and Alpesh Ramjani three Overs from the wrong end.”
Namibia set the target at 191 for the loss of six wickets, and in the Ugandan innings, restricted the Cranes to 164.
Alpesh Ramjani (55) and Ronald Lutaya (54), both touring Namibia for the first time had done well with the bat, but the Cricket Cranes were unable to fetch the target.
Mahatlane stated it was a game of small margins and insisted there were positives to pick.
“The boys rallied back after Juma’s injury, and at some stage we were in it. Unfortunately, we didn’t find the momentum in the middle Overs. Young Lutaya getting a 50, Alpesh getting a 50 on their first tour of Namibia was something brilliant.”
The two teams return to action on Thursday in what will be their second T20 game.
On a sad note, players Simon Ssesazi, Henry Ssenyondo lost their mother on Wednesday. The two will return home from Namibia and will be replaced by Fred Achellam and Pius Oloka.
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