Kenyans cricketing status on the rise

Resurgent Kenya halted the victory roll of giant-killers Afghanistan on Saturday with a 107-run win in the 2011 Cricket World Cup Qualifier.

Resurgent Kenya halted the victory roll of giant-killers Afghanistan on Saturday with a 107-run win in the 2011 Cricket World Cup Qualifier.

The full-time professionals from east Africa compiled a daunting 282-5 in their allotted 50 overs with Kennedy Obuya hitting an undefeated 109 in the north-west university town of Potchefstroom.

Facing their first major test of the final qualifying tournament for the World Cup, Afghanistan surrendered five wickets for 62 runs and were all out for 175 after 47 overs.

After Group B victories over Denmark and Bermuda, this was a reality check for the young Afghan team that honed its skills as refugees in neighbouring Pakistan after fleeing conflict in their homeland.

They face unpredictable Netherlands and United Arab Emirates in the mini-league round.

Kenya, shock first-day losers to Netherlands, had 87 runs on the board before losing opener Morris Ouma (35) and the total reached 175 before the Afghan bowlers claimed another wicket with Alex Obanda (60) the victim.

Afghanistan struggled and only Mohammad Nabi (56) made a significant contribution.

Pre-tournament favourites Ireland and confident Canada boast 100 percent records in Group A after comfortable victories over Uganda and Namibia respectively.

But Scotland, defending champions in the quadrennial tournament, got a fright against bottom-of-the-table Oman, winning by just nine runs at Wits University in Johannesburg.

The highlight of the six-match programme will be the clash between Ireland and Canada. - Sapa-AFP

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