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June 28, 2008
Kenya's National Elite League has hardly been the success that Cricket Kenya hoped for, and with one round of matches remaining, there are three sides in with a shout of the title - but the more important question is whether anyone actually cares.
The event was hit by the violence which followed the presidential elections last December. Originally, it should have taken place during school holidays, which would have meant that all school-age players would have been available. But the postponement resulting from the civil unrest was then followed by another because of the weather, and finally plans for three-day matches had to be shelved when it became apparent that few people would be able to get the time off either work or from education to participate. The compromise was three rounds of two-day matches played on Saturday and Sunday over successive weekends.
None of the three games played so far has produced a result, Southern Stars reaching 22 for 3 when set 30 from three overs against Western Chiefs. The nadir came when one of the matches last weekend was cancelled because Eastern Aces were unable to raise a team.
The idea of an elite competition was and remains a good one, and fundamental to Kenya's selectors being able to identify the best talent in the country. But the timing has to be right, and the will has to be there from the players.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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