Kenya v Canada, Intercontinental Cup, Nairobi, 2nd day October 13, 2007

Odoyo century lifts Kenyans

Cricinfo staff

Kenya 393 (Odoyo 103*, Bhatti 5-75) lead Canada 263 by 130 runs

Thomas Odoyo recorded his maiden first-class century, and the 19-year-old Alex Obanda continued his fine debut season with 83, as Kenya overcame a stiff Canadian challenge led by the left-arm seamer, Umar Bhatti, to take control on the second day of their Intercontinental Cup clash in Nairobi.

Kenya's day began inauspiciously. Having lost a wicket to the very first ball of their innings on Friday evening, history repeated itself when Bhatti resumed in the morning, and Hiren Varaiya edged an outswinger to third slip for 5. At 8 for 2, Kenya were up against it, but a third-wicket stand of 122 between Obanda and David Obuya calmed the home team's nerves.

Obanda unfurled his cover-drive almost at will, striking 14 fours from just 70 balls, and was looking set for his second century when he mistimed a loft over the covers off Sunil Dhaniram. But Obuya ground onwards, finding excellent support in a 60-run stand from the captain Steve Tikolo. Eventually he fell for 72 after slogging Qaiser Ali to deep square leg, but his brother Collins took up the cudgels to carry Kenya close to first-innings parity.

Jimmy Kamande became Bhatti's second victim when he was bowled for 17, and at 307 for 7, Kenya were eyeing up a swift conclusion. Instead they were rocked onto the back foot by Odoyo, who found stirling support from the tail to lift Kenya towards the 400-mark. He struck 14 fours and a big straight six off Dhaniram, and though Bhatti cut through the tail to finish with his sixth five-wicket haul in 11 first-class matches, it was Kenya who had the upper hand.