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Newly promoted Ngara shock Stray Lions



Stray Lions suffered a shock 41-run defeat at the hands of newly promoted Ngara Sports Club on Sunday as the 2019 Nairobi Provincial Cricket Association (NPCA) Twenty20league got underway at Cutchi Leva.

With a target of 154 to beat, last year’s semifinalists were dismissed for 113—registering one of most their shocking loss in recent times. So poor were Stray Lions in their batting that only four batsmen registered more than 10 runs with Varun Prakath top-scoring with 26. Stray Lions, who were using Cutchi Leva as their home ground away from Peponi School, fielded a new side from the one that played in the 50 overs league. Siblings Nehemiah Odhiambo and Shem Obado and Harrison Ambani were the only regulars fielded in the Stray Lions side. Ngara took advantage of a relatively inexperienced Stray Lions side to post 154 for 5 before bowling them out in 17.3 overs.

Shubham Patel posted half-century (75) from 55 balls to lead his side to a comfortable total. He put up an opening stand of 45 runs with Karan Patel before losing three more wickets for 10 runs. Shubham then found an inning changing stand of 51 runs from Dayel Patel (24) which got the scores to 106. Harmin Patel also remained unbeaten on 18 off 17 balls while Ngoche was Stray Lions outstanding bowler with 4 for 9. In reply, the hosts struggled with the bat as Ngara bowlers easily found inroads in their inning. Opener Nadeem Ahmed (20), Prakash (26) and Bansi Patel (29) were the only batsmen to have offered resistance to the determined Ngara bowlers. Aakash Shah (2 for 5), Dhyey Patel (2 for 21), Yash Patel (2 for 8) and Harsh Patel (2 for 19)—all bagged a brace.

Elsewhere, Rushabh Patel’s half ton led visitors Nairobi Gymkhana to a nine-wicket win over hosts Ruaraka Sports Club. Chasing 102 to win, Gymkhana lost only one wicket in 13 overs with Rushabh scoring an unbeaten 87 from 48 balls. The half-ton included eight sixes and five boundaries as he shared an opening stand of 75 with Karan Kaul (16). Hitesh Bhudia (23) and Hitesh Varsani (20) were the hosts’ top scorers as Siddhraj Virajput bagged 3 for 14 and Martin Okoth finished with 2 for 24.

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