Nigeria Senior Cricket Team Top the Final Rankings of the Pepsi ICC WCL Division 7.

Oladotun Olatunji Receiving the Player of the Tournament Award.
Oladotun Olatunji Receiving the Man of the Match Trophy from Edward Fitzgibbon.

A superlative innings caps off a great tournament for the youngster, Oladotun Olatunji, as his partnership with team captain, Adekunle Adegbola set up a comfortable six- wicket victory for Nigeria over Vanuatu in the rain- affected final of the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League (WCL) Division 7 in Botswana on Saturday.
The partnership of Adegbola and Olatunji amounted to a 150- run fifth wicket, as both finished unbeaten on 51 and 67, respectively. At the end of the day, Nigeria successfully achieved its 134- run target- according to the Duckworth- Lewis method (D/L method) – for the loss of four wickets against the team that had not lost a match in the tournament.
After an early rain interruption, Nigeria had to adjust to the D/L method, then the pair of Adegbola and Olatunji, who picked up his third man- of- the- match award of the tournament, came together with Nigeria struggling at 19 for four, having lost both openers in the second over. It was a clever combination of two batsmen, with the skipper battling patiently and Olatunji scoring quick runs, including nine boundaries, on the way to his 64- ball 67.
The two were still at the crease when Nigeria reached its revised target of 134 in 32.1 overs to record its first victory over Vanuaty in the tournament.
It was a great tournament for Olatunji, having already achieved the two highest scores of the tournament- 127 against Ghana in the team’s second round clash, and 125 not out against the host team Botswana, to help his team to a 171 run victory.
Vanuatu’s strong performing batting lineup of Trevor Langa (10) and Damien Smith (3) failed to fire against the impressive Joshua Ogunlola within five overs of each other, earlier in the game. Vanuatu captain, Andrew Mansale got their innings back on track with a well- struck 25, but wickets fell regularly as the Nigeria bowlers restricted the run rate and good fielding resulted in two run outs. Vanuatu was all out for 133 in the 39th over of its allotted 45 overs.
While Vanuatu bowler Niko Unavalu captured all four Nigeria wickets for 27 runs, the day belonged to Olatunji, whose performance with the bat earned him the highest run getter of the tournament, with a strike rate of over 120.
Nigeria captain, Adekunle Adegbola with delights over his team’s performance against the undefeated Vanuatu had this to say: “It was an excellent performance from the Nigerian side today. Awesome bowling and impressive batting too. Well done guys.”
Andrew Mansale, the Vanuatu captain was gracious in defeat, “Well done Nigeria. I am proud we worked hard enough to get promoted to division 6, and I am confident we will improve.”
The victory means Nigeria and Vanuatu now joins Argentina, Bahrain Jersey and Kuwait for Division 6, which will be staged in jersey from 21 to 28 July 2013.
At the conclusion of the last match, Oladotun Olatunji was announced as the player of the tournament. He finished the tournament with 355 runs, including the only two centuries of the tournament.
Nigeria ended the tournament top of the final rankings of the Pepsi ICC WCL Division 7; followed by Vanuatu, Botswana, Fiji, Ghana, and Germany.

1 Comment

  • Whao! Nice one for he team and the country. If the gov’t can spend money on other sports like they do on football, i think it’s going to do a lots of development in the entire sports. And also reduce unemploment, attract investors and create a good image for the country in both Africa and the world. Goodluck to he team. Am happy for you all. *CHEERS*

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