It may have been in a far less colourful stage than the glamorous international arena he was used to but former national skipper, Maurice Odumbe is back playing cricket after a five year ban by the International Cricket Council (ICC).
Odumbe made his return with three wickets in a six-wicket win for his new team Telca against Sir Ali Muslim Club during a Nairobi Provincial Cricket Association league match at the Ngara Sports Club in South C, beat Sir Ali Muslim Club by six wickets at Ngara Sports Club on Sunday.
Elated Odumbe said that he has been training hard for the day and was happy with himself.
“I feel I will get my rhythm back in the next two weeks time,” he said
Odumbe’s victims were Kashif Khan who was Sir Ali’s top scorer with 45 runs whom he had stumped by the wicket-keeper, Newton Muthee. He clean bowled Mohamed Taufiq for 20 and prescribed the same dose of the medicine to Faraz Butt for a duck.
The former NPCA chairman, Sukbhans Singh, who was watching the match said: “Odumbe has not lost his bowling action. He is the same bowler we knew before his was banned five years ago.”
Odumbe was banned in 2004 for alleged association with bookmakers.
He decided to bat at number five on Sunday to give the young players a chance, but the game ended before he could get the opportunity to bat again after the ban.
Batting first after wining the toss, Sir Ali Muslim Club were routed out for 151. Telca’s captain Prashant Srinivas led the bowling attack taking four wickets for 12. In reply Telca reached the target, 154 with six wickets and 15 overs on hand.
Brijal Patel (59) was Telca’s highest runs getter and shared a fourth wicket partnership of 101 with Nelson ‘Mandela’ Odhiambo who was unbeaten on 51.
On the international scene, Nehemiah Odhiambo led Kenya’s bowling attack that restricted Canada to 234 all out in their first innings of the International Cricket Council Intercontinental Cup, giving Kenya (317 all out) a first innings lead of 83 runs at Kings City, Canada, on Saturday.
Odhiambo was the highest wicket taker for his team with three for 60. His victims included Rizwan Cheema whom he got caught by Thomas Odoyo for six. He had Sunil Dhaniram caught by Steve Tikolo for 22 and got Khurram Chohan caught by Hiren Varaiya for 31. He was supported by Tikolo (2-16) and Varaiya (2-54).
However, Jimmy Kamande batted well in his seven overs even though he failed to take any wicket. He bowled five maiden overs and conceded two runs.
Zameer Zahir top scored for Canada with 57 off 131 deliveries with four boundaries and two sixes.
The end of Canadian innings left Kenya with 30 minutes to bat before stumps and they put on an beaten 12 runs.