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Swamibapa A and defending champions Kanbis were tied at the top of the Nairobi Provincial Cricket Association Super League as it took a one week mid-season break.
In recent years Kanbis have held a marked advantage as they supply few players to any teams in the Kenya set-up, with a result they are almost always at full strength when rivals are weakened by absentees on national duty. This simmering issue was highlighted a fortnight ago when then leaders Swamibapa, missing five players who were in Canada with the Kenya side, lost to third-placed Telca.
While that loss has been taken on the chin, it against raises concerns that the club might consider a repeat of their stance in 2007 when they withdrew from the league after being penalised for refusing to field a side when they had nine players on national duty. Next month NPCA games are scheduled at the same time Kenya are playing in the ICC Intercontinental Cup, which will again hit Swamibapa, among others, hard.
This made the weekend break being scheduled at a time there was no international cricket all the more bizarre.
“Everyone wants Kenyan cricket to be as competitive as possible, and we recognise that it’s simply not been the case for a number of years,” one club official told Cricinfo. “Bone-headed organisation like this just ensures a lower standard of cricket and plays right into the hands of clubs who contribute nothing to the national side.”
Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and AfricaFeeds: Martin Williamson
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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Executive editor Martin Williamson joined the Wisden website in its planning stages in 2001 after failing to make his millions in the internet boom when managing editor of Sportal. Before that he was in charge of Sky Sports Online and helped launch and run Sky News Online. With a preference for all things old (except his wife and children), he has recently confounded colleagues by displaying an uncharacteristic fondness for Twenty20 cricket. His enthusiasm for the game is sadly not matched by his ability, but he remains convinced that he might be a late developer and perseveres in the hope of an England call-up with his middle-order batting and non-spinning offbreaks. He is now managing editor of ESPN EMEA Digital Group as well as his Cricinfo responsibilities.