ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 / News

Kenya v Zimbabwe, Group A, World Cup 2011, Kolkata,

Kenya's last chance for victory

The Preview by Sriram Veera

March 19, 2011

Comments: 6 | Text size: A | A

Match Facts

March 20, Kolkata
Start time 0930 hours (0400 GMT)

Steve Tikolo celebrates his half-century, Kenya v Scotland, Kenya T20 Tri-Series, 6th match, Nairobi, February 4, 2010
Will Steve Tikolo script himself a perfect farewell? © Thota Sreenivas
Related Links
Series/Tournaments: ICC Cricket World Cup
Teams: Kenya | Zimbabwe

The Big Picture

Kenya v Zimbabwe is a meaningless contest between two teams with one victory between them in this World Cup, so why should anyone watch it? Well, if you are a Kenyan fan, this is a must-watch because it is the last chance they have to win a game in this tournament. If you are a Zimbabwe fan, this campaign must have been painful to watch, but there could be some light at the end of the tunnel. If you are a neutral fan, watch the game to catch some entertaining characters.

Ray Price is one such character. He is enthralling to watch and reminds one of those county cricketers from the days of the yore around whom celebrated writer Neville Cardus would spin a myth. Cardus would have loved Price: He is miserly with the ball and even his run-up, if it can be called that, is miserly. Why waste energy running when you can just walk two steps and let it rip? He almost snarls at the batsmen, loves to sledge, and is known to extend his follow-through to a hand-shaking distance from the batsman. He bowls spin but has a mind of a fast bowler. And he is a fighter. His economy rate is 3.86 from 88 ODIS; not many can boast of such parsimony. It's a pity that he, and his fellow spinners, have been let down so terribly by the batsmen. The captain, Elton Chigumbura, has also been a pale shadow of the hard-hitting batsman that we know he can be. His batting and bowling has been in decline ever since he took over the captaincy - he has picked two wickets at an average of 158.50 from 19 games, and averaged 19.85 with the bat.

His opposite number, Jimmy Kamande, has had an interesting ride in this tournament. He began by talking about playing the "Kenyan brand of cricket", but was let down by his batsmen. Then there was a rumour about a rift within the team that needed his intervention before his team finally showed some admirable resistance against Australia. Tanmay Mishra, who displayed such flair and skill against the Australia spinners, will be the man to watch out for against the Zimbabwe tweakers. Collins Obuya has always been flamboyant and it will be the final farewell song for Steve Tikolo, a Kenyan legend.

Form guide

(completed matches, most recent first)
Zimbabwe LLLWL

Watch out for...

When Steve Tikolo was younger, he used to stun the top teams with his dazzling strokeplay. Age has caught up with him in this tournament and for a batsmen who used to play late, he now seems late on deliveries. However, this is his final shot at glory and he is the type of player who is likely to rise to the occasion.

Tatenda Taibu is a player who can thrill and disappoint you in equal measure. There is so much talent to dazzle you but he can press the self-destruct button at any time. He is almost addicted to constant innovation while batting and it often leads to his demise. He has a high of 98 in this tournament but his has scored a total of 136 runs from five games. Which Taibu will turn up tomorrow? The impish version prone to self-destruction or the talented one who will thrill?

Team news

Kenya will bring back Tikolo for one last hurray and it's to be seen whether Zimbabwe bring back Charles Coventry.

Zimbabwe (probable): 1 Brendan Taylor, 2 Regis Chakabva, 3 Tatenda Taibu (wk), 4 Craig Ervine, 5 Elton Chigumbura (capt), 6 Charles Coventry, 7 Greg Lamb, 8 Prosper Utseya, 9 Graeme Cremer, 10 Ray Price, 11 Chris Mpofu.

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

Stats and trivia

Eighteen of 24 wickets Zimbabwe have taken at the World Cup have gone to their spinners

Ray Price has an economy rate of 3.54, the best along with Muttiah Muralitharan and Shahid Afridi, for bowlers who have bowled more than 15 overs in this tournament.


"We fielded well and bowled superbly against Pakistan, but that can't be said about our batting. We have to work on it because that has been the big problem through the tournament. Besides the batting part, we've put up a big fight. My biggest concern is on the batting in the first 15 overs, especially against stronger teams. We have to really work on that when we get home."
Elton Chigumbura knows his team's Achilles heel

"Steve Tikolo is a legend. He is the man who actually made us play One-day International cricket. He is the one who made us qualify for the first time in 1996 World Cup... Hopefully, we will send him off with a win."
Jimmy Kamande hopes for the perfect farewell gift for Tikolo

Sriram Veera is a staff writer at ESPNcricinfo

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Comments: 6 
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Posted by Lalith on (March 20, 2011, 5:19 GMT)

Good to see that Steve Tikolo plays to win Kenya in his farewell match for him to remember the match.

Posted by sachit on (March 19, 2011, 19:34 GMT)

It is sad to see the state of two teams - zimbabwe made it to the super six twice - in 1999 and 2003 and kenya made it as far as the semi's in 2003. Can't beleive these are the same teams. What happened to the zimbabwe side that defeated sri lanka and India (though they were second string sides) during a triangular last year? There was a lot of talk about a Zimbabwean resurgence but it seems it was a myth. Nevertheless it'll be sad to see Tikolo go - does anybody remember the 90+ score he got against sri lanka in 1996?

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 19, 2011, 17:38 GMT)

I am happy that the winning trail nof Australia has come to to an end this brings in more competition and very intersting games in the next round

Posted by Mohan on (March 19, 2011, 16:26 GMT)

Zimbabwe is the better team both in terms of batting and bowling than that of Kenya.The main reason for the defeats for Kenya is their bowling has given away too many freebies.But Zimbabwe has impressed a lot.Had they played major teams(top 8 teams) regularly,their progress towards test status and its ranking in ODIs would have improved.Time for them to go on a high note.

Posted by Cricket Fan on (March 19, 2011, 15:29 GMT)

According ICC Ranking KENYA is at 13th Place. Zimbabwe at 10th. So Zimbabwe is stronger than Kenya. But this is a golden opportunity for Kenya to show ICC that they are ready to fight with a Full Member.

Posted by Pravin on (March 19, 2011, 14:30 GMT)

Murali,Akthar,tikolo,davison will retire after world cup. Even we heard retirement news before this like shane bond, Gilly, hayden, Macgrath. But i never heard any retirment news of indian plyaers even not in past (except kumbale) why? almost all player are sacked from team why?

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