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Netherlands 133 for 3 (Szwarczynski 45, Onyango 2-17) beat Kenya 130 (Kamande 42, Seelaar 4-19, Bukhari 4-33) by seven wickets
Kenya's fall from Associate powerhouse to also-rans continued with their seven-wicket defeat to Netherlands at Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. Rocked by Steve Tikolo's first ball dismissal, Kenya never fully recovered and were bowled out two balls short of their allotted overs for 130. Eric Szwarczynski's 45 led Netherlands' reply, and they chased down the target with five balls to spare.
With a place in the Super Fours at stake for the winner of this game, Kenya would have been hoping for a strong performance from their top order. Tikolo's 126-run opening stand with Alex Obanda steamrollered Canada on Wednesday, but they had added only a single run today when Tikolo hit Mudassar Bukhari's second ball to Szwarczynski to depart for a duck.
Pieter Seelaar, Netherlands' left-arm spinner, distinguished himself with a tight spell under pressure in the win over Canada, and he performed superbly again to finish with 4 for 19 in his four overs. After Bukhari removed Obanda for 5, Seelaar worked his way through the middle order, dismissing captain Maurice Ouma, Collins Obuya, Rakep Patel and Tony Suji in consecutive overs as Kenya slipped to 67 for 6.
Kenya's final total owed a lot to Jimmy Kamande's enterprising innings. His 42 contained three sixes, and carried Kenya to 126 before he fell to Mohammad Kashif in the penultimate over. After his dismissal, Bukhar had Shem Obado caught by Seelaar, and bowled Lameck Onyango to wrap up the innings.
Kenya needed to replicate Netherlands' early breakthroughs to give themselves a chance of victory, but Szwarczynski and Alexei Kervezee stole the game with a 72-run partnership in the first half of the innings. Kervezee eventually fell after he had compiled a domineering 33, and Szwarczynski departed five short of what would have been a well-deserved half-century, but their dismissals came too late for Kenya. Although Onyango's effort with the ball took the match into the final over, the reality was that Netherlands won at a canter.
Their reward is a place in the Super Fours, and with it the chance to make it to the World Twenty20 in West Indies. In the absence of the experienced Thomas Odoyo, the lack of incisiveness in Kenya's bowling attack was exposed in this tournament, and they will also be left ruing the disappointing defeat to UAE in their opening game, where pedestrian batting scuppered their pursuit of 165.