Otim praises coaches for comeback chance
Posted Tuesday, October 29 2013 at 09:14
KAMPALA- Being one of the surprise inclusions on the 15-man team, Raymond Otim has vowed to pay back the faith entrusted in him by coaches Johan Rudolph and Henry Okecho come next month’s ICC Global Twenty20 World Cup Qualifiers in United Arab Emirates.
Otim returns to the national fold after a two-year lull and will be one of the four spinners skipper Davis Karashani will call upon when the campaign for a top six finish that gurantees a berth at next year’s World Cup in Bangladesh gets underway on November 15.
“Oh men, I am extremely delighted to be back,” Otim, in a stereorised accent, tells Daily Monitor with a smile plastered across his face.
“Many people are shocked about my inclusion but it is all about hard work. I am ready to silence the Doubting Thomases.
Although returning to the national fold gives Otim unlimited joy, the thought of playing his first comeback tournament in UAE puts a scowl on his face.
The 27-year-old was left a disillusioned man after Uganda was relegated to Division III following a one-run loss to Papua New Guinea at the 2011 ICC Division II World Cricket League showpiece.
“I didn’t play much in that tournament,” reveals Otim adding, “And after it ended I was further disappointed by the relegation and I decided to take a break from the national team and concentrate on club cricket.”
At the time, Otim was regarded as a batting all-rounder but his consistent good shifts for Tornado forced former national coach Martin Suji too woo him back. “With hardly any practice, I kept playing well and I knew I still got game,” added the Nile Knights star.
“And when Suji called me to be part of the provisional squad last year, I knew I had a fighting chance.
“I re-invented my game and returned as more of a leg-break spinner than a batsman because that was the discipline coach Suji felt I could make an impact.
Despite the Kenyan tactician’s departure, Otim remained in good stead. Under Rudolph’s tutelage in the Nile Knights franchise, the acrobatic fielder took the best bowler’s gong with eight wickets in the regional 50-over East African Cup.
That feat together with his cameo batting displays turned around his fortunes as coaches Suji and Henry Okecho plus captain Davis Karashani started singing his praises.
“Ray (as Otim is called by his peers) has worked his way up and is not here by mistake. The two years were a nice time for him to refelect. He is good to go,” said Karashani.
Born: October 21, 1986
Major teams: Uganda, Nile Knights, Under-19s
Batting style: Right-hand
Bowling style: Leg break
2005: ICC Trophy (Ireland)
2006: ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup (Colombo)
2004: ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup (Dhaka)
2011: ICC World Cricket League Division II (Dubai)
T20 EAPL: 17 runs & nine wickets
50-over EAC: 17 runs & nine wickets
National League: 112 runs & 7 wickets