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Match Report
Derek Scott

Easter Saturday and Ireland were well beaten by Kenya at the well appointed Rubber Institute, some 20 miles outside Kuala Lumpur. It was a scorching day but there was early morning dew on the ground and the pitch was damp.

Ireland were unchanged from the USA match and persisted in the theory of putting the opposition in. It nearly worked. Kenya were 26-3 and a difficult chance was missed before Modi scored (he made 49 off 59 balls) after Steve Tikolo was fourth out at 98. Odumbe, probably the premier batsman in Kuala Lumpur, took over and made 99 not out. 247 was far too many to chase and Ireland spend most of their innings trying to improve their run rate.

Ireland had a great start. Gillespie bowled the first over. The fourth ball had Gupta caught at short mid-on. Patterson bowled his quota of wides, five in five overs, but he took a wicket. At 25 Karim hit a drive to extra cover were Lewis took a low two-handed diving catch to his left. In the next over, at 26, Obuya, previously known as Otiena, stroked to mid-off and set off. He was rightly sent back, slipped, and was run out by Harrison's throw to the wicket-keeper. Eagleson and Doak were bowling at the 15 over mark when the score was 57 and Eagleson started with three wides. Before over 20 all the spinners had bowled and 83 was up after 20 overs. Steve Tikolo and Odumbe played well until, at 98, Tikalo was lbw sweeping at Harrison. 98-4-31 in 24 overs.

Then came the Eagleson let off of Modi off Curry at 99. There were nine runs off a Molins over but only 16 added up to over 30 and the rate reached exactly 4 an over after 35 overs were bowled. Now the rate increased. Odumbe reached 50 in 83 balls but Modi took over and scored 20 in five overs. Then, when 49, at 174, in the 41st over Modi swept upwards at Molins and was caught by Harrison at deep square leg. 26 came in the next four overs with Odumbe hitting Curry for a six. The Kenyan running between the wickets in this last part of the innings was marvellous, for its sheer speed. In the same over Bensons dropped a skier at mid-on offered by Odoyo. This was not expensive as Doak bowled Odoyo in the next over. 204-6-18.

The last five overs, bowled by Doak and Curry, saw 43 scored. Curry's last over, the 49th, had 14 scored off it. This included another Odumbe six and a wicket when L.Tikolo, brother of Steve, was bowled. 235-7-11. He moved to leg and swung wildly. Odumbe was 87 when Doak started the last over. Four twos brought Odumbe to 95. He hit the last ball straight but it pitched a few yards inside the boundary giving him 99 not out off 120 balls, with two sixes and six fours. He got the Man-of-the-Match Award. The three Irish fast bowlers bowled 13 overs for 46 runs. The four slow bowlers went for 192 in 37 overs. Six of the seven bowlers took a wicket each. Harrison was best, 1-38 in his 10 overs.

The Kenyan opening bowlers, Steve Tikolo and Suji bowled 10 overs each off the reel. They did a remarkable job and were hostile and accurate. The Irish captain, one of their victims, said "they bowled out of their skins". After their 20 overs Ireland were 39-5. In the fourth over Tikolo yorked Curry who was on the drive. Suji, in his third over, bowled Lewis and Dunlop with successive balls. Both deflected wide balls onto their stumps. Benson and Doak played carefully for 11 overs and put on 13. Then Benson pushed a catch back to Tikolo. 24-4 and Benson's eight took 34 balls. Tikolo took the fifth wicket, his third, in his last over. Gillespie cut upwards and was caught at gully. Tikolo had 3-28, Suji 2-11. They strangled the Irish scoring from the start.

Eagleson was dropped at slip before he scored in Odoyo's first over. Karim, a slow left-arm bowler, soon bowled Eagleson with a ball that kept low. Doak was the top scorer with 35 off 94 balls including a six off Tikolo. He was seventh out at 77, when he advanced to Karim but only hit the ball very high to short leg. Harrison was run out for the second match in succession. He was the striker but was sent back by Rutherford, at 88, but failed to regain his ground. The next stand, Rutherford and Patterson was the best of the innings. 38 was put on in just over six overs, but Kenya were using their sixth and seventh bowlers. 100 was up in 46 overs and Patterson hit Patel for a six in the next over. Rutherford hit two fours. Then, with one ball left, Patterson hit a catch to long-on off L.Tikalo. This was not a great match for the Irish, but Rutherford enjoyed his 25 not out.