September 16, 2016 By Sahr Morris Jr.
Chief Executive Officer of Sierra Leone Cricket Association (SLCA), Francis Trevor Samura, says Sierra Leone has a slim chance of qualifying for the next round of ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup qualifier.
Samura and other officials are currently in South Africa with the national team in the ongoing ICC-Africa Division II tournament as they battle against six other nations – Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Botswana, Zambia and Rwanda – for two allocated qualifying spot.
Sierra Leone has already registered two wins and suffered two defeats in the tournament, sitting in fourth position, but Botswana’s 1 wicket win over Nigeria on Thursday has given Sierra Leone slim hopes of making one of the two qualifying spots.
Samura said: “Sierra Leone’s chances to qualify is slim as our destiny isn’t in our hands. The realistic position is 3rd, which will also be an achievement as far as ICC’s key performance indicators are concerned.
“However, Sierra Leone must beat Botswana by a bigger margin, like score seven runs and over against Rwanda and concede low deficit. All I can say to our team is to win against Botswana and Rwanda with superior net run rate and see what will come out of the other matches; then we will have hopes of qualifying.”
Nigeria’s undefeated run in the tournament came to a climax at the ‘B’ Field of Sahara Park, Willowmoore. The Nigerians chose to bat after winning their toss against Botswana.
The West Africans were all out for 101 runs in 39.3 overs. Botswana, very conscious about the challenge ahead, went very hard after this target even though they lost their first wicket in the 6th over but never lost sight of the goal.
The match went down to the wire with Botswana needing one run in with one wicket remaining. Definitely not what Nigeria envisaged at the start of the innings as Botswana were victorious by 103 for 9 in 31.5 overs.