Recently updated on March 24th, 2019 at 03:19 pm
Nigeria’s junior national cricket team emerge winner of the International Cricket Council, ICC U-19 World Cup Qualifier Africa Division Two title at the Senwes Park, in Potchefstroom, South Africa.
Nigeria defeated Sierra Leone at the finals by 137 runs and triumphed over Tanzania in one of the semifinals to qualify for the 2020 ICC World Cup. It also earned the team promotion to the Division One cadre.
The Junior Yellow Greens convincingly defeated Mozambique, Lesotho and Ghana in Group B to go unbeaten before dispatching Tanzania by 35 runs in the semifinal to qualify for the final.
Captain Slyvester Okpe side batted first scoring 242 runs for loss of nine wickets in 50 overs with standout performer being opening batsman, Olayinka Olaleye. Olaleye posted 110 runs off 124 balls, Samuel Mba 62 had runs and semifinal hero, Segun Ogundipe added 29 runs.
Nigeria’s best bowler at the ICC U-19 World Cup Qualifier Africa Division Two title, Peter Aho, led the onslaught by claiming five wickets, 35 runs, one maiden in four overs, while the duo of Mohammed Taiwo and Abdulrahman Jimoh claimed two wickets apiece to reduce their opponents to a paltry 105 runs all out in 31 overs.
Sierra-Leone and Tanzania, which won the third place game, were also promoted to Division One, where they will face countries Namibia, Kenya and Uganda.
On the victory, Nigeria Cricket Federation (NCF) President, Professor Yahaya Ukwneya said the team deserved all accolades for the sterling show throughout championship. He congratulated the Coaches, led by Uthe Ogbimi and Tamuno John, for a successful outing.
“The boys were very dedicated and were disciplined all though the stages of the event. It is not time to celebrate because we have Division One Qualifiers, Inter Continental Qualifiers before the World Cup Proper where we would face countries like England, India, Pakistan, South Africa and other top nations.”