Nigeria’s national team players are ready to take part in the prestigious Uganda Elite Games, which begins in Kampala on Thursday (today) after the Ugandan Cricket Association granted six slots to Nigeria’s players to participate in the league, PUNCH Sports Extra reports.
The elite games in Kampala will be played from February 1 to 4 for the women’s event while the men’s game will be played between February 5 and 13.
Three players each were endorsed by the Nigeria Cricket Federation for the male and female categories of the tournament, in order to enhance their preparations for the forthcoming African Games and the NCF T20i invitational.
Isaac Okpe, Chiemelie Udekwe and Isaac Danladi are the selected Yellow Greens players while Female Yellow Greens trio Piety Lucky, Favour Eseigbe and Sarah Etim will play in the women’s game, thanks to Nigeria’s remarkable performance in the ICC Women’s T20 Africa Qualifiers in Uganda last December.
Wicket keeper of the Female Yellow Greens, Etim and right-hand batter Eseigbe will play for Itanda Kayakers while Lucky will represent Bujjagali Rafters.
Etim, who won Nigeria’s best fielder award at the last qualifiers, and left-hand batter of the Yellow Greens, Danladi, say they can’t wait for the tournament.
“First of all I want to amass some more experience outside Nigeria while I also enjoy what I love doing most. It’s a rare privilege and it will help us get ready for the two major tournaments ahead,” Etim told our correspondent.
“I’m looking forward to my experience in Uganda. We have played a number of matches there before and I’ve always looked forward to returning. It will help me gain more club experience in cricket and it’s good that two of my teammates will also be playing.”
So, by the time we come back to the national team for the African Games, we will have something more to deliver for Nigeria in Ghana,” Danladi also said.
According to the NCF, the initiative is part of a high-performance and players exchange programme aiming to provide Nigerian cricketers with opportunities to compete in elite leagues across the top cricket-playing nations in the continent.
Players from Rwanda and Kenya are also in the tournament.