Janet Mbabazi named best Bowler as Victoria Pearls return to Global qualifiers

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David GOMBE

For the second time since their debut appearance in 2018, Uganda successfully secured a spot in the global qualifiers.

Hosting the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Africa qualifiers at Entebbe Cricket Oval, Uganda clinched one of the two available spots to progress to the global qualifiers scheduled in Dubai early next year.

Despite a loss to the Lady Chevrons in the final match of the tournament, Uganda had already guaranteed their place in the global qualifiers with a remarkable victory against neighboring Tanzania.

This achievement marks Uganda’s return to the global stage, showcasing their consistent progress and determination in women’s cricket.

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Uganda and Zimbabwe will represent Africa in the upcoming global qualifiers, while Tanzania and Namibia ended the tournament sharing the third-place position.

Victoria Pearls return to Global Qualifiers

Regrettably, Rwanda and Botswana faced relegation to division two due to their performance.

Uganda’s journey through the qualifiers commenced in Group B, contending against Namibia, Nigeria, and Rwanda. Their campaign started with a thrilling 6-wicket victory against Rwanda, defying expectations, particularly considering the history of previous Kwibuka finals.

Facing a formidable Namibian side in the second game, Uganda secured a hard-fought 4-wicket triumph. Their quest continued against Nigeria, where they clinched a commanding 6-wicket victory under the pressure to top Group B, securing their place at the summit.

Advancing to the semifinals, Uganda encountered Tanzania in a riveting match. Despite a tense start, Uganda set a competitive target of 99 runs, led by Stephanie Nampiina’s resilient 51 off 53 and Rita Musamali’s crucial 35 off 48. Battling at 52/3 in 15 overs, Uganda pushed through to reach 99, cheered on fervently by their supporters.

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Tanzania, opting to bowl first, faltered at 89 runs, falling short by 10 runs after 19.2 overs, granting Uganda direct access to the tournament finals and the global qualifiers.

This triumph solidified Uganda’s standing, showcasing their resilience and determination on the global stage.

In the high-stakes final against Zimbabwe, the Victoria Pearls faced a setback, enduring a 6-wicket loss.

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Looking ahead, both Zimbabwe and Uganda are gearing up for the Dubai global qualifiers next year. Their ultimate ambition is to secure a coveted spot in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup scheduled in Bangladesh later in the year.

The comprehensive list of teams participating in the global qualifiers includes: Sri Lanka, Ireland, Thailand, UAE, Vanuatu, USA, Netherlands, Scotland, Zimbabwe, and Uganda.

This sets the stage for an electrifying and fiercely competitive qualifier as these teams vie for their place in the prestigious ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, promising an enthralling journey ahead.

Tournament Individual Awards and Accolades

Player of the tournament: Precious Marange (Zimbabwe)

Best Bowler: Janet Mbabazi (Uganda)

Best Batter: Modester Mupachikwa (Zimbabwe)

Best Fielder: Sarah Etim (Nigeria)

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