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New captain will complete the Cricket Cranes puzzle

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The columnist thinks a batting captain like either Mukasa  should

The columnist thinks a batting captain like Mukasa should take over from Karashani. PHOTO BY INNOCENT NDAWULA 

By Robert Madoi

Posted  Monday, April 28  2014 at  01:00

In Summary

Manager was also thrown into the equation, with former Cricket Cranes bowler and coach, Henry Okecho, asked to hold the fort.

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Change of guard. The captaincy is to cricket what a radar is to a ferry. The debate about who will step into Davis Karashani’s slippers as the next cricket captain should have, in fact, started yesterday!

We all know what whets the tastebuds in that holy trinity of bread, salty fatty beef and piquant sauce otherwise known as a sandwich. The quintessentially streaky contents in the middle, right?

And so it was with cricket last week. The middle was such a whet! Sandwiched by the Girls Cricket Week final (comfortably won by Jinja SSS) and the introduction of night cricket to the menu was the juicy unveiling of the senior men’s (Davis Turinawe) as well as women’s (Frank Nsubuga) national team coaches. A new role of Development Manager was also thrown into the equation, with former Cricket Cranes bowler and coach, Henry Okecho, asked to hold the fort.

The drive to have Ugandan cricket turn the corner has began in earnest! It promises to be a long bumpy ride.

Like any bumpy ride, the jolts and jerks will sure bring lots of discomfort. The eyes shouldn’t at any point be taken off the finish line, though.

Uganda Cricket Association (UCA) shouldn’t cringe away when the odd bouncer rattles its characteristically soft underbelly. It should soldier on in what will doubtless be a commendable attempt to grow the game from the grassroots.

It is indeed refreshing to know that UCA is reverting to a blueprint that brought it so much acclaim at the turn of the 21st century.

The mini cricket and schools development programmes were starting to look like relics of a lost cause. The Schools Cricket Week, for one, was buckling under the strain of neglect from UCA.

Smell the coffee
This as UCA went for jugular with an end-all in the shape of Cricket Cranes. That pet project of course fell flat on its face when the well-remunerated South African coach, Johan Rudolph, oversaw a forgettable 2014 ICC World Cup Qualifier campaign, which ended in disgrace with Uganda holding the wooden spoon. Now that fingers have been burnt, UCA officials are waking up to smell the coffee. They should be commended for that.

They could have dropped the cup of coffee in the first place! I believe this bold stroke should also be replicated when the issue of the Cricket Cranes captaincy comes up for debate. The Cricket Cranes will feature in ICC World Cricket League Division III later this year, and can ill-afford another listless display.

With Davis Karashani tacitly indicating that he wants to loosen his grip on the captaincy, UCA’s technical arm finds itself having to swiftly act. The captaincy is to cricket what a radar is to a ferry. Needless to say, the Cricket Cranes captaincy has to be treated with the utmost seriousness. The debate about who will step into Karashani’s slippers should have in fact started yesterday!

If you asked me for my two cents on this, I would say we cherry-pick a batting captain - preferably Roger Mukasa or Hamza Saleh. I believe handing the captaincy to either of the two will help them mature.

Heck, it will make them bat with the responsibility demanded of a team’s bedrock.
Captaincy won’t be new to Saleh who once skippered the national under-19 side. As for Mukasa, I reckon he is streetwise enough to hold his own. Mukasa or Saleh it is for me then! How about you?

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