By RON FANFAIR
Canada suffered a humiliating 247-run loss to Kenya in their four-day Intercontinental Cup match that ended early on the fourth and final day at Maple Leaf ground in King City last Monday.
Former Kenyan captain, Steve Tikolo, who has already announced that he’s quitting the sport next year, set up the victory with scores of 158 and 169 to help his team pass the 300-run mark on both innings on a good batting wicket.
Tikolo stood out in his team’s first innings, facing 194 balls while registering 22 boundaries. The next best individual total was captain Maurice Ouma’s 28.
In the second innings, Tikolo shared a 330-run third wicket stand with opener Seren Waters who hit 157 not out.
Canada’s bowlers struggled in both innings against the composed Kenyans who were shut out 5-0 by Zimbabwe in a one-day international series earlier this year.
Middle-order batsman Nitish Kumar, 15, made his debut for Canada’s senior team in the game, scoring 12 and 0. He left shortly after the game for New York where he’s leading Canada’s Under-15 side in a triangular North American tournament involving the United States and the Bahamas.
Final scores in the four-day game were Kenya 317 (Tikolo 158…Henry Osinde 3-28) and 362-3 declared (Tikolo 169, Waters 157 not out); Canada 234 (Zameer Zahir 57) and 198 (Abdool Samad 87…Hiren Varaiya 6-45).
Canada and Kenya meet in three One-Day Internationals (ODI) this week at the same venue. The first was played yesterday while the next two take place on Friday and Sunday.
At stake in the ODI series is the Ben Sennik trophy, dedicated to the contributions of the Kenya-born cricket administrator who recently stepped down as Cricket Canada’s president.
Canada and Kenya will compete for the trophy every two years when the two countries meet in ODIs.
“The game grew leaps and bounds in Mr. Sennik’s time and we are happy to dedicate this award as a lasting legacy to his contributions,” said interim Cricket Canada president, Ranjit Saini.
Added Cricket Kenya’s president, Samir Inamdar: “Ben originates from Kenya and over the years I have worked with him, I have always found him to be a great supporter of the game of cricket in both countries. Cricket Kenya respects him as a true friend and we are all delighted that he’s being honoured in this way.”