The Uganda ladies national cricket team, now known as the Victoria Pearls were on Monday, 6th September flagged off and departed for the T20 World Cup Qualifiers slated for September 7th to 20th in Gaborone, Botswana.
Uganda is in Group B alongside Nigeria, Cameroon, Sierra Leone and rivals Namibia, with the top two teams in the group set to qualify for the semi-finals & a single African slot available at the Global Qualifiers.
Uganda will play their first match on Thursday, 9th September when they come up against Namibia, a side they faced two years ago in Zimbabwe.
Victoria Pearls Head Coach, Suraj Karavadra is aware of the importance of winning the opening match in the campaign and he’s upbeat that the ladies will put in a good shift.
“The team is confident and ready for the tournament. We have had enough preparations and I trust the players to deliver. The bubble put the team in good shape and I believe we shall be successful,” Karavadra said during the team’s flag off ceremony at Entebbe Cricket Oval.
In 2017, when the event was hosted in Namibia, Uganda emerged overall winners handing themselves a ticket to their maiden appearance at the Global Qualifiers in Netherlands the following year.
Janet Mbabazi, the current Victoria Pearls Vice-Captain was part of the triumphant 2017 team and now says that the side will need to work in unison to repeat what they did then.
“We shall need to work as a team in order to emerge victorious. I trust my team mates to do their best because I believe we have prepared enough for this event,” Mbabazi said before lauding stake holders and fans who came up with the team’s new name.
For the past three weeks, the team has been camped at Hawaii Resort in Entebbe partly as a Covid-19 preventive measure and also help them fine-tune their skills for the showpiece.
The Travelling 14: 1. Immaculate Nakisuyi (Captain), 2. Janet Mbabazi (Vice-Captain), 3. Rachel Ntono, 4. Proscovia Alako, 5. Esther Iloku, 6. Rita Musamali, 7. Naomi Kayondo, 8. Stephanie Nampiina, 9. Irene Alumo, 10. Patricia Malemikia, 11. Consy Aweko, 12. Kevin Awino, 14. Damalie Busingye.
Officials: Suraj Karavadra Head Coach, Alpha Adowa Assistant Coach, Edgar Kazibwe Team Psychologist, Shamim Nassali Team Physiotherapist, Denis Musali Media Manager, Lwiza Nabulwala Team Manager.
Fixtures for Uganda:
Thursday 09/09/2021 Uganda v Namibia
Friday 10/09/2021 Uganda v Cameroon
Saturday 11/09/2021 Uganda v Nigeria
Tuesday 14/09/2021 Uganda v Sierra Leone