ICC WCL DIVISION IV
May 5 Fixtures - 4.30am (EAT)
Uganda vs. Jersey, UKM-YSD Oval
Malaysia vs. Bermuda, Royal Selangor
Denmark vs Vanuatu, Kinrara Academy Oval
Points Table After Round IV
Team P W L T Pts NRR
Uganda 4 3 1 0 6 1.464
Denmark 4 3 1 0 6 0.510
Jersey 4 2 2 0 4 0.174
Malaysia 4 2 2 0 4 -0.057
Vanuatu 4 1 3 0 2 -0.866
Bermuda 4 1 3 0 2 -0.879
The Cricket Cranes have one more hurdle to seal promotion to Division III in what has largely been a successful International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cricket League (WCL) Division IV campaign in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Jersey are the remaining obstacle in Uganda’s pathway that started on the wrong note with a nine-run loss to Malaysia that was shrouded in controversy.
From then on it has been smooth sailing with a 189-run triumph against Bermuda, an 81-run victory over Vanuatu and Thursday’s one-run skirmish over the ‘big hitting’ Danes.
The latter win took Uganda top of the log with six points, same as the defeated Denmark, but with a healthier Net Run Rate (NRR) of 1.464.
Second-placed Denmark (0.510) are a bit off the NRR pace by O.954.
Destiny lies in Uganda’s hands. But not that a collapse is impossible. The naysayers in the Ugandan cricket fraternity have already witnessed a similar scenario.
The Baby Cricket Cranes - National Under 19 side - was involved in a spectacular collapse during the ICC Africa Under 19 World Cup Qualifier in Nairobi last June.
After dictating pace throughout the tournament and poised to step onto the Airbus A380 to New Zealand as the continent’s lone representatives at the ICC Youth Cricket World Cup earlier this year, the Ugandans bottled it.
They were bundled out for a paltry 60 runs - something that deemed impossible then - and then Kenya proceeded to chase down the score in 9.2 overs to hop onto the Airbus ahead of Uganda at the 11th hour.
Permutations sneak peek
But for Uganda not to qualify, it will require a collapse of marginal proportions.
The mathematics is on Uganda’s side and if captain Roger Mukasa wins his first toss of the tournament and opts to bowl, one ball will make certain Uganda’s place in Sunday’s final and a place to the Division III competition which will likely be hosted by either Australia or USA.
But again if Mukasa and his teammates bat first and keep up with their tournament form during which they have averaged 200 runs per match, Jersey will need to chase it down in 12 overs to be able to surpass Uganda’s NRR.
Again, if Uganda suffer a bad day at office and get bundled out for 150 runs, the Channel Islanders must get it under 33 overs to edge past Uganda. Otherwise for now it is looking more likely that Uganda and Denmark are the top candidates for the two promotion places to Division III.
But if any late twist is to happen to the log, only Jersey are capable of doing so.
They have built themselves a reputation of giant killers.
They are only here because they stunned the ICC Associate world on the final day of the ICC WCL Division IV to snatch a ticket from Qatar, who had set pace throughout the tournament.
And after being written off, Jersey kept alive their promotion hopes, holding their nerve to beat the hosts by 10 runs in yet another rain-affected encounter on Thursday courtesy of a fine batting display that saw them post the tournament’s highest score of 270 for 8.
In other games, Denmark, like Uganda, will need just a victory to ensure their qualification whereas hosts Malaysia will need results to go their way, if they are to scrape through.
But the WCL being a cut-throat event, expect fireworks in this final preliminary round as players play for not only their future careers and their countries rankings on the global circuit, which also dictates their new fees funding structure from ICC.