Nigeria Under-19 cricket team Tuesday afternoon left the country’s shore for Uganda ahead of the International Cricket Council (ICC) -Africa World Cup qualifiers with promises that they will not come back home empty handed.
Seyi Shonde who is the team’s chief coach stated that all is set for the tournament, the best players in the country have been selected and the team is ready to grab the desired ticket as Africa’s representatives to the World Under-19 Cricket Tournament in Bangladesh .
“We are set for the ICC/Africa World Cup qualifiers in Kampala, Uganda and nothing will be taken for granted. We had enough training but what we need is to get used to the turf wicket, and if we can get used to it before the tournament, you will see the positives of our training.”
Meanwhile, the Under-19 captain, Uthman Adebiyi said that the team has surpassed 85 percent readiness for the qualifiers scheduled for Kampala, Uganda.“You can see how our training is, we have trained enough for the qualifiers and nothing will be taken for granted.”
Adebiyi hinted that despite the fact that they are in the same group with countries like Kenya and Botswana in pool B of the tournament, they will not allow names to intimidate them but give the opponents the fight of their lives on the pitch noting that they are battle ready.
“Playing character will be different, there is no cause for alarm, for the set of countries we are going to meet, we will apply our own techniques, we are not going to look at the countries names, they are human beings like us and the experience will count. For me and my assistant, we will both apply the experience we had in Uganda and Botswana during ICC Division 6 together with some of my colleagues who have tasted the CCC League in fullness,” said Adebiyi.
Nigeria is drawn in Pool B alongside Botswana, Kenya and Sierra Leone while Pool A include Uganda, Namibia, Tanzania and Zambia.
The qualifiers will be in round robin format while the first in both Pools will qualifier to play in the final and the overall winner will represent Africa in the ICC-Under 19 World Cup in Bangladesh.
The second place in both Pool will play third and fourth place, while the third position in both pools will fight for fifth and sixth position.
The ICC-ACA qualifiers will be held between May 25 to June 3 in Kampala, Uganda.