New Delhi, March 5 (IANS) Kenyan batsman Maurice Ouma Saturday slammed the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) decision to trim teams for the 2015 World Cup.
The apex body has decided to cut down the number of teams from 14 to 10 for the next edition.
Ouma, who stepped down from captaincy last year to make way for Jimmy Kamande, feels Kenya deserves a place in the World Cup more than any other associate nation.
“The ICC’s decision doesn’t make sense to us,” said Ouma at a media interaction ahead of their match against Canada Monday.
“They (ICC) have pumped in so much of money in their High Performance Development Programme for the associate nations. They have spent millions of dollars. They should continue globalising the sport.”
On his team’s participation in World Cups, he asserted: “We definitely deserve to be here as we have played in the last five World Cups. We have qualified for the World Cups more than any other nation.”
Kenya reached the semi-finals of the 2003 edition and became the first non-Test playing nation to achieve the feat. But after the stupendous effort, their cricket hit a low.
Ouma recalled his team’s glorious days and pointed out reasons for the sport’s downfall in the country.
“We did not use the success of 2003 as a springboard. The board did not acknowledge the performance of the team at that time,” he said.
“The team suffered also because four-five senior players retired at the same time. I feel they could have easily played for some more time and guided the youngsters. But that did not happen and now our team is in a transition period.”
The African nation has had a bad run in the tournament, losing their three league games by huge margins. Ouma said their game Monday against Canada is a must-win match and the team is motivated despite the disappointing results in earlier matches.
“It is a must win match for us. We play them frequently and recently saw them training in the ICC’s academy in Dubai.
“We are very disappointed with our performance so far but we are looking forward to play Canada.
“We have got three games and at least want to win two matches (against Canada and Zimbabwe) before facing Australia.”