ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 / News

Canada v Kenya, Group A, World Cup 2011, Delhi

Clash of the lesser equals

The Preview by Abhishek Purohit

March 6, 2011

Comments: 11 | Text size: A | A

Match Facts

March 7, Delhi
Start time 14:30 local time (09:00 GMT)

Balaji Rao prepares to bowl during practice, Delhi, March 6, 2011
Ashish Bagai feels that Balaji Rao, the legspinner, will be crucial for Canada on the Kotla pitch © AFP

Big Picture

Canada and Kenya usually don't go in to a World Cup game expecting to win, and certainly aren't expected to do so by others. Tomorrow's encounter provides an exception. Despite having misfired in several areas in their previous three games, both sides know they are expected to win this time. Having given Pakistan a scare in Colombo, Canada would feel they are slightly ahead going in to this one, but their bowlers were helped by the cloud cover that hung over the Premadasa. Chances of getting that kind of assistance in Delhi are slim.

There is not much that separates the sides. In fact, they have a lot in common. Both have conceded 300-plus totals, and while that may be in keeping with the trend this tournament, they haven't managed to bat themselves past 150 in a single game. Kenya looked to be on their way to do that against Sri Lanka, but were blown away by Lasith Malinga's yorkers.

Kenya would like to think they have the better pedigree, but Canada have displayed more spirit and gumption so far. Jimmy Kamande, Kenya's captain, has instead had to deny reports of a rift between the coach Eldine Baptiste and some players. He has admitted it is difficult to keep motivating a side that has consistently under-performed.

Given how little there is to choose between the two, the odds are that there might not be a familiar batting collapse at the least.

Form guide

(Most recent completed games first)

Canada LLLLW


Pitch and conditions

If it's the Kotla, turn and low bounce cannot be that far. The spinners will like the surface. Imran Tahir and Pieter Seelaar certainly did, when South Africa and Netherlands played here. The weather is expected to be moderately warm by Delhi's hot standards.

Watch out for…

Collins Obuya laboured to a half-century against Sri Lanka. That was what his team needed after a couple of early wickets had fallen. He should find it easier against Canada. He has been Kenya's most prolific batsman of late, and possesses a game that can be altered depending on the situation.

Balaji Rao enjoyed his battle against Pakistan's heavyweight middle order, and snapped up Misbah-ul-Haq and Umar Akmal. The legspinner was unafraid to flight the ball, and though he went for some runs, he tested a line-up that plays spin very well. Kenya don't, and Balaji will be itching to have a go.

Team news

Ashish Bagai has said that Parth Desai, the 20-year old left-arm spinner, could play tomorrow. That means one of the seamers could sit out. John Davison, the veteran opener, could also be back after a niggle made him miss the Pakistan game.

Canada: (probable) 1 John Davison, 2 Nitish Kumar/Ruvindu Gunasekera, 3 Ashish Bagai (wk/capt), 4 Zubin Surkari, 5 Rizwan Cheema, 6 Jimmy Hansra, 7 Tyson Gordon, 8 Khurram Chohan, 9 Harvir Baidwan, 10 Balaji Rao, 11 Parth Desai.

Kenya have no major injury concerns, and Thomas Odoyo should come back after missing the match against Sri Lanka.

Kenya: (probable) 1 Maurice Ouma (wk), 2 Seren Waters, 3 Collins Obuya, 4 Steve Tikolo, 5 David Obuya, 6 Tanmay Mishra/Rakep Patel, 7 Thomas Odoyo, 8 Jimmy Kamande (capt), 9 Nehemiah Odhiambo, 10 Shem Ngoche, 11 Elijah Otieno.

Try picking the XIs for tomorrow's game by playing Team Selector.

Stats and trivia

  • The Canada squad has scored a total of 4359 ODI runs. Steve Tikolo alone has made 3399.

  • The sides have played against each other in 12 ODIs, Kenya winning seven of them, including their two encounters at the 2003 and 2007 World Cups.


"This is our best chance of a win in the World Cup. If we get our batting right we should be competitive."
Ashish Bagai knows an opportunity when he sees one.

"I guarantee you tomorrow we are going to express much more than we did in the past matches."
Jimmy Kamande believes Kenya can still show what they are made of.

Abhishek Purohit is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo

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Comments: 11 
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Posted by ABDUL HAMEED on (March 7, 2011, 9:03 GMT)

I think cheema needs to be more patience.He just can't trying to hit each and everyball.Be patience and when you get your ball then go for it.Or else he cant be a good player.He needs to spent some time to go for it.Team should promote him up in to the order and tell him not to through his wicket away.If that happen canada can put up a decent score on the board.All the best .....

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 7, 2011, 8:40 GMT)

Canada should open with Cheema and Davison or atleast push Cheema up the order..Nitish Kumar looks terribly out of place and is extremely defensive as an opener.Seems he is played for pure emotional reasons..I know this is harsh but thats wht it seems..

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 7, 2011, 7:54 GMT)

The Kenyan side of 2003 is drastically different from today's Kenya...them making the semis 8 years ago means nothing in this contest. And yeah, they did get some free points, although they did content well as minnows.

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 7, 2011, 7:38 GMT)

canada wins da raceeeeeee!!!!!

Posted by vijaya on (March 7, 2011, 7:13 GMT)

i think that kenya will surely won the game against canada.if Tikolo played will it will be easy to kenya.

Posted by Faisal on (March 7, 2011, 6:11 GMT)

I think if Canada beat Kenya, it will be a minor upset, but still an upset. If I recall, Kenya has beaten West Indies, Sri Lanka, and probably Zimbabwe and Bangladesh as well. So they definitely have the upper hand.

Posted by Arif on (March 7, 2011, 4:04 GMT)

Good Luck CANADA, watch out for Rizwan Cheema...

Posted by Dhumper on (March 7, 2011, 3:29 GMT)

They might have been semi finalists but could they have gotten there without the free points they got from other teams refusing to go to Kenya because of security concerns?

Posted by Brenton on (March 7, 2011, 1:45 GMT)

John Davison to the rescue!! Go Canada :-)

Posted by Suj on (March 7, 2011, 1:29 GMT)

Lesser equal? I don't know about Canada but Kenya was a WC semi-finalist a couple of tournaments ago

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