Kenyans optimistic

Odumbe upbeat despite tough pool ahead world qualifiers

The event is set for October 18 to November 2 in the United Arab Emirates.

In Summary

•The event is set for October 18 to November 2 in the United Arab Emirates

•The team has not been training for almost three months owing to compulsory leave slapped to both the staff and the players by CK

Maurice Odumbe
Maurice Odumbe
Image: FILE

National team head coach Maurice Odumbe is optimistic of Kenya’s chances at the next month’s World Twenty20 Qualifiers despite being pitted in a tough pool and delay in training.

The event is set for October 18 to November 2 in the United Arab Emirates. Kenya, who will be seeking their maiden appearance at the global event set for Australia next year, have been pooled against previous finalists Netherlands and Scotland in Group A. Others in the pool are Namibia, Bermuda, Papua New Guinea and Singapore. 

“It’s a tough pool but what can we do? We have to play, be competitive and do what we need to do to make it—that is giving it our best,” Odumbe said. The former national team captain added: “We have to be at our best if we are to survive the pool.”

The team has not been training for almost three months owing to compulsory leave slapped to both the staff and the players by CK.

Last week, the players and the CK board met to resolve the issues surrounding their contracts and agreed to start training on Wednesday last week but that didn’t happen.

Odumbe is aware of how the crisis has affected his training plans but he is confident he will post good result despite the delay in training. Speaking as the team kicked off their training at Ruaraka Sports Club yesterday, Odumbe said there are a number of areas he hopes to improve before the team jets out for the event next month.

“There is a lot we will need to improve on if we are to get something from the qualifier. Turning to training alone is not going to be enough within this short time. We must up our fielding and our batting line-up has to be at their best. Batsmen should realise that it will not only be about good starts but also the finish,” he added.

He added: “For the bowlers, they must know that we have no time to start changing anything and the fielding must be right. The coach was hopeful that a number of new players will be included in the team to improve their fortunes. He cited Aman Gandhi as a key inclusion in the team. Kenya will open their campaign against Netherlands on October 18 before taking on Scotland on the following day.