World Cricket League round-up February 2, 2007

Kenya stun Ireland thanks to Odoyo onslaught

Cricinfo staff in Nairobi

Thomas Odoyo is mobbed after Kenya's amazing win © Will Luke
A remarkable 39-ball 61 from Thomas Odoyo sunk Ireland in the dying moments of the eighth match of the World Cricket League, in a thrilling game at Ruaraka. When all seemed lost, with Kenya needing another 52 from six overs with just one wicket in hand, Odoyo took the initiative and went berserk.

A six into the car park at square leg got him moving, while he cleverly worked twos into the gap to retain the strike. With 20 needed from two overs, he opened up the levers and launched David Langford-Smith over his head for two huge sixes, one nearly crashing through the window of the press box, before slashing him behind point for four. An arrogant, disdainful flick through midwicket brought the winnings runs, prompting wild, euphoric celebrations. Kenya had scored 54 from just 38 balls. It was a tail-end run-chase to match the best.

Ireland couldn't quite believe what had hit them and, sheepishly, they waited on the pitch while the sizeable crowd - and Cricket Kenya administrators - invaded the pitch to mob Obuya. Earlier, the day had belonged to Ireland. Kevin O'Brien and William Porterfield's superb hundreds rescued Ireland's stuttering innings and, much like Kenya managed to do in the dying overs, made the most of the short boundaries with a flurry of fours and sixes. The pair brought up their hundreds off successive balls, O'Brien reaching his with a straight six. Kenya's usually spirited fielding lacked its spark and Ireland raced away

Kevin O'Brien on the attack during his hundred, but it wasn't enough for Ireland © ICC
But they didn't rest on their laurels with the ball, either. Although they had managed a competitive total, it was by no means out of Kenya's reach - and Ireland's bowlers grabbed earlier and regular wickets. David Obuya played bullishly for his 34, Nehemiah Odhiambo attractively for his 66 - but unlike Ireland, no Kenya batsman made good their start. When Tanmay Mishra fell to Andre Botha for a classy 49, most assumed the match went with him. That it was left to Oboyo at No.8 to rescue the seemingly unrescueable might be of some concern, but not right now. Kenya are fast approaching unstoppable form while for Ireland this will be especially painful having also gone down off the last ball to Scotland.

John Davison again showed his hitting power as Canada easily overcame Bermuda in a match reduced to 21 overs per side at the Gymkana ground. His 69 came off 49 balls as Canada reached 162 for 8, although Bermuda's attack did manage to pull the innings in with late wickets. However, their batsmen found the task well beyond them as Sunil Dhaniram took 4 for 10 as Bermuda were bowled out in under 16 overs. Only Lionel Cann prospered, his 41 taking just 19 balls with four sixes.

Fraser Watts launches a powerful blow during his 58 © AFP
Paul Hoffmann took two wickets in the last over to help Scotland to a nail-biting two-run victory over Netherlands at Jaffrey's Sports Club in a match reduced to 37 overs a side. Billy Stelling and Peter Borren seemed to have got Netherlands out of jail with an eighth-wicket stand of 76 after they slid to 128 for 7 chasing 208, and they began the final over needing five to win. After singles from the first two balls, Hoffmann bowled Stelling, Borren was run-out trying to get on strike the next delivery and then Hoffmann bowled Edgar Schiferli first ball.