Saturday August 30 2014

Memory lane: doubling the act


John Nagenda: The senior presidential advisor was as proficient with the bat as he is with his pen and mouth. It was during the Makerere University Inter Hall Games that Nagenda entered the Ugandan cricket annals as the first cricketer to plunder a double-ton while playing for Nkrumah (called New Hall then) in 1960/61. The rats of Mitchell are the one that faced Nagenda’s wrath as he pillaged their attack en route to piling an unbeaten 201.

Yona Wapakabhulo: In many ways Yona was battle hardened. Fearless on the pitch and a fierce competitor, Yona’s technique is still talked about as one of the best. He tucked under his belt the record of Ugandan cricket’s highest score. That was in 1992. Yona crafted a 212 for Wanderers in the National Cricket League.

Himanshu Jadav: Many overseas players have brought their international feats into Ugandan cricket, and consequently thrilled many local fans. One such cricketer was the Indian Himanshu Jadav. Hailing from Baroda, Jadav became the first batsman to cross 250 in Uganda when he belted a sturdy 262 for Premier Cricket Club in 1993. Many partisan fans still talk about Himanshu as the hardest hitter of the ball.
Guy Kimbowa Lutaaya: The son of renowned sports administrator, Abbey Lutaaya, Guy had a pretty decent cricketing career. He was at the peak of his powers whilst representing his beloved school Busoga College Mwiri...and, well, er, his house Willis. It was with his house that he showed true shades of a talisman. He hit an unbeaten 204 for Willis against Nabikamba in 1994.

Guy Kimbowa Lutaaya: Guy was at it again two years later when he bettered his all-time best score by 21 as he conjured another unbeaten double-ton (225*) for Willis.

Arthur Kyobe: The boy who has gone through the ranks to become one of the best all-time opening batsmen is also a batting giant in Uganda. Kyobe became the youngest ever double centurion when he pummeled the visiting Dean Close College bowling arsenal from England. His whirlwind run feast saw him end with highly admirable figures of 225. The year was 2005 at Kyambogo Oval.

Joel Olweny: During his reign as national captain in 2008, Olweny affirmed his status as the best batsman in the country when he cantered to a masterful 207* against Wanderers in the Mawanda Cup quarterfinals. His unbeaten double-ton consisted of 28 fours and 3 sixes and was his career best. Hopefully Nanji Pindoriya’s latest knock can awaken several batsmen in Uganda to keep up the tradition of piling on the runs.