Obuya, Luseno lead Nomads resurgence
David Obuya and Alfred Luseno fired with all cylinders as the Northern Nomads bounced back from their first week defeat to beat the more fancied Western Chiefs by 62 runs at Nairobi Gymkhana in the second phase of the Sahara Elite League 20-20 competition.
Once again, winning the toss helped as Nomads chose to bat first and, unlike week 1, made the most of the conditions. Davis Obuya showed why the selectors rate him as the first choice opening batsman for Kenya with a sublime 72 off only 52 deliveries to set the platform for his team. Obuya started watchfully and then accelerated as he settled in with his fifty coming of 43 deliveries. Shashikant Sanghani, the best Nomads batsman from week 1, provided ample support before he became the first of the Nomads wickets to falll when he came forward to Harish Varsani and was stumped by David Maina for 39.
By then however, Nomads were already at 97 and looking good. Thomas Odoyo joined Obuya and the two took the score to 146 before Obuya came unstuck to the persistent Tony Suji. By then the damage was done: he had made 72 runs off 52 deliveries including eight 4s and a six and the Northen Nomads were on the way to a very defendable total.
Jimmy Kamande fell for 1 when he was run out by Peter Ongondo with the score on 154 and the Chiefs captain followed up by bowling Rakep Patel first ball to see Nomads falter, but Thomas Odoyo and Josphat Ababu saw their team through to the end, Odoyo blasting 10 off his final two deliveries to finish on 35 not out from 22 balls faced.
Tony Suji, Harish Varsani and Peter Ongondo all picked up a wicket for Chiefs, but only Suji managed to go for less than 6 an over, with figures of 4-0-21-1. It was a dominant display by the Nomads and they followed it up well when it was their turn with the ball.
Alfred Luseno started loosely giving away 2 wides and 6 runs off the bat from his first over but fought back brilliantly in his second over as he bowled Tony Suji for 1 and then had Ken Migai trapped in front for a duck. The fourth ball of his next over saw Pritesh Lalji edge to Obuya behind the stumps and Chiefs were all of a sudden in trouble at 3-18.
Opener David Maina and captain Peter Ongondo then combined to add 36 for the next wicket before Kongonis youngster Dominic Wesonga had Ongondo clean bowled for 13. Maina continued to chase with ones and twos supported by Prakash Pindolia before succumbing to the off spin of Shem Obado for a well made 32. Pindolia and youngster Nilesh Jesani added a further 22 runs before Pindolia holed out to Wesonga off Obado and the Chiefs were in trouble. Well behind the run rate by this stage, they were realistically never going to make it home and lost any hope of doing so when Moses Otieno was run out by Josphat Ababu for 1 in the 18th over. In the end, Nomads 165 proved 62 runs too many for the Chiefs who face the unbeaten Aces tomorrow.
After their 9 wicket drubbing by Eastern Aces in the first round, this was a huge come back from the Northern Nomads and should they win against the hapless Southern Stars tomorrow, they could still finish in the top 2 of this event. They will go into tomorrow on the high from winning, while the Chiefs will need to regroup before their make or break match against Steve Tikolo's Aces tomorrow.