Colin Thompson, The Royal Gazette
Fast bowler Kevin Hurdle and all-rounder Janeiro Tucker combined their efforts in Kenya yesterday to steer Bermuda to a narrow, seven-run win over a spirited Uganda — their first international victory in eight months.
Tucker carved an unbeaten 59 to propel the Islanders to 231 for seven in their allotted 50 overs before Hurdle's four-wicket burst restricted Uganda to 224 for nine in reply at the Sir Ali Muslim Cricket Club ground.
It was the Island's first win at this level since beating Scotland in South Africa last February and a victory Bermuda skipper Irving Romaine hopes his team can build upon.
"It was a very good game of cricket and it's always great to have a win," he said.
Electing to bat first, openers Jekon Edness (41) and Stephen Outerbridge (34) shared in a 83-run opening stand that gave the Islanders a very promising start.
"It was just what we were looking for and they were right on target," Romaine said.
But a middle-order collapse saw Bermuda quickly slide to 136 for five despite a swashbuckling 35 from number three James Celestine as Uganda's spin attack tightened the noose.
Bermuda vice-captain David Hemp (nine) and skipper Romaine (0) both went cheaply, leaving the big hitting Tucker and Lionel Cann (25) with a burden to carry lower down the order.
But the pair responded to the challenge and added 51 runs for the sixth wicket to put the Islanders back in control.
Tucker, in particular, made the Ugandans pay dearly after spilling chances at mid-wicket and in the deep as he opened the blade to hit a flurry of boundaries towards the end of the innings.
Frank Nsubga (two for 24) led the Ugandan bowling while Davis Arinatus and Richard Okia also had two apiece.
It was then left to Hurdle (four for 40) to spearhead the Island's attack and see them to victory — despite stubborn resistance from middle order bats Nandi Kishore (84 not out) and Daniel Rayangi (50).
"Hurdle bowled an excellent spell and got a lot out of the wicket," Romaine said.
Supporting Hurdle in the bowling were left arm spinner Dwayne Leverock who took two for 36 while Malachi Jones, Tucker and occasional off break spinner Romaine had one each as Uganda came up just short of the target.
Bermuda will meet Uganda tomorrow at the same venue before taking on hosts Kenya in the first of three one-day internationals in Nairobi on Thursday.