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Afghanistan close in on win

Afghanistan look at all set to top the ICC Intercontinental Cup points table with just one more day to go in their final league game against hosts Kenya


David Obuya acknowledging the cheers (Photo courtesy of Cricket Kenya)
Afghanistan look at all set to top the ICC Intercontinental Cup points table with just one more day to go in their final league game against hosts Kenya. At the end of the third day of the contest at the Nairobi Gymkhana, Afghanistan were just four wickets away from a win. The visitors have already pocketed six points by virtue of taking a first innings lead.

Set to chase a mammoth 512 for a win, Kenya responded to the challenge gallantly to end the day at 324 for six needing another 188 runs for an improbable win. After losing opener Seren Waters early, the Kenya response was scripted by the Obuya brothers _ David and Collins _. The pair put on 90 runs for the second wicket before Collins (52: 79b, 9x4) fell. David (79: 110b, 10x4) added a further 99 runs with veteran Steve Tikolo. Thereafter, David's dismissal at 197 for three was closely followed by the departure of Tikolo (55: 76b, 10x4) with the score at 210 for four.

Skipper Maurice Ouma then took charge of the innings and built partnerships with the lower order. Just when Ouma looked to be steering Kenya towards safety, he was snapped up towards the end of the day by off-spinner Mohammad Nabi. Ouma made a 112-ball 68 with ten boundaries. Hamid Hassan was once again the best Afghan bowler on view with figures of 2 for 74.

Earlier in the day, off-spinner James Ngoche (5-39) ran through the Afghan lower-order to trigger a collapse from an overnight score of 166 for five to 207 all out. Fast bowler Elijah Otieno impressed once again with a spell of 4-44. But despite these spells, Afghanistan ended the day with a strong possibility of topping the points table and are also in with a chance to log a comprehensive win.

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