Uganda names squad for maiden cricket World Cup

The Lyca Mobile-sponsored Uganda national senior men’s cricket team, the Cricket Cranes has been flagged off to the West Indies for their maiden ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.

The team’s preparations have been extensive, starting with a two-week bootcamp in Jinja, Eastern Uganda, in January.

This was followed by a 12-day training camp at Omtex I Can We Can (ICWC) Cricket Institute in Saphale, Mumbai, India.

They also embarked on a high-performance tour to Galle, Sri Lanka, and participated in the 13th African Games in Accra, Ghana, where they won a bronze medal.

Further training camps in Galle and Colombo, Sri Lanka, and sessions at Lugogo Oval, Kinetic Arena, and Fitness Junction Gymnasium over five months have ensured the team is ready.

The Cricket Cranes will spend a few days acclimatizing in the Caribbean, playing warm-up matches against Namibia and Scotland on May 28 and May 30, respectively, at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Trinidad and Tobago.

They will then fly to Georgetown, Guyana, for the main event.

The Uganda Cricket Association (UCA) announced a squad of 15 players and two traveling reserves, led by captain Brian Masaba for the historical bow.

The team includes the legendary Frank Nsubuga, who at 43 will be the oldest player at the ninth T20 World Cup, alongside players like Roger Mukasa (Sri Lanka 2006). In addition there are Juma Miyaji (West Indies 2022) and Ronald Lutaaya (West Indies 2022), who have played at an ICC Under- 19 World Cup before.

“We are an excited bunch of players. No feeling can replace how happy we are to be the chosen ones to represent the Pearl of Africa at its first senior men’s World Cup,” said skipper Masaba, who has been part of the team since 2011.

“There have been several great captains and talented players who narrowly missed qualification. In Windhoek last November, we believed in ourselves, and beating Zimbabwe set us up for success. Subsequent wins over Nigeria, Kenya, and Rwanda secured our qualification alongside Namibia.”

Regarding Uganda’s prospects, Masaba was philosophical.

 “We would like to thank the UCA management for their support. Our preparations have been the best ever. We are ranked 22nd, just behind Papua New Guinea at 20th. Many see this as the game we should target, but we aim to make a mark even against Test-playing nations. Expect us to script a fairytale and some players to secure opportunities in the world’s biggest leagues. That’s the plan.”

Uganda, who will be coached by former Indian first-class cricketer Abhay Sharma, are drawn in Group C alongside co-hosts West Indies, New Zealand, Afghanistan, and PNG.

Their first match is scheduled for June 4 against Afghanistan at 3.30 am (EAT) in Guyana.

Final squad

Roger Mukasa, Simon Ssesazi, Ronak Patel, Robinson Obuya, Riazat Ali Shah (Vice- Captain), Kenneth Waiswa, Dinesh Nakrani, Brian Mark Masaba (Captain), Bilal Hassun, Juma Miyagi, Cosmas Kyewuta, Frank Nsubuga, Henry Ssenyondo, Fred Achelam, Alpesh Ramjani.

Travelling reserves: Innocent Mwebaze, Ronald Lutaaya

Team management

Coach: Abhay Sharma Assistant Coach: Jackson Ogwang Consultant: Craig Williams

Analyst: Steven Tusiime

Physiotherapist: Shamim Nassali

Doctor: Dr. Rishi Jagdeo

Strength & conditioning: Emmanuella Oroma

Selector: Nehal Bibodi

Media manager: Innocent Ndawula

 Team manager: Charles Waiswa

Delegation head: Jackson Kavuma

Warm up fixtures

Tuesday, May 28 -2.00 AM:

Uganda vs. Namibia, Brian Lara Cricket Academy. Trinidad & Tobago

Thursday, May 30, – 5.30 PM:

Scotland vs. Uganda, Brian Lara Cricket Academy, Trinidad & Tobago

Tournament Fixtures

Tuesday, June 4-3:30 AM: EAT

Uganda vs. Afghanistan, Providence Stadium, Guyana

Thursday, June 6-2:30 AM: EAT

Uganda vs. Papua New Guinea, Providence Stadium, Guyana

Sunday, June 9-3:30 AM: EAT

Uganda vs. West Indies, Providence Stadium, Guyana

Saturday, June 15-3:30 AM: EAT

Uganda vs. New Zealand, Brian Lara Stadium, Trinidad & Tobago


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