Bangalore, March 14 (IANS) A spirited Kenya was disappointed after losing to defending champions Australia by 60 runs late Sunday but their confidence got a boost by chasing an imposing 325-run target in a Group A fixture of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 at the Chinnaswamy stadium in this tech hub.
“We are disappointed to have lost again but our confidence has gone up as we were able to face the Aussie pace attack and score 264 for six wickets. Three run-outs cost us dearly,” Kenyan skipper James Kamande told reporters here at a post-match briefing.
Though it was the fifth consecutive defeat for the East African nation in this World Cup, Kamande said he was happy with the team’s performance despite not playing to full potential in chasing such a big target.
“My feeling is we played up to 70 percent of our potential. Batting for 50 overs against a team like Australia is a positive outcome of this match. Our confidence levels have gone up to perform better in our next game (against Zimbabwe in Kolkata, March 20) and win as it will be our last league match,” an upbeat Kamande said.
Admitting that chasing a 300-plus target was going to be difficult though the pitch was favourable to batsmen, Kamande said Tanmay Mishra’s run out was the turning point, as he was going strong with Collins Obuya after steadying the innings with a 114-run fourth wicket partnership.
“Of the six wickets we lost, three were due to run-outs, including two difficult ones in trying to take two runs. Finally, we were short of overs to chase the target,” he lamented.
Noting that it was a great learning experience to play against the mighty Aussies, the skipper said, despite the loss, the players were enjoying the game, which was more important than winning or losing.
“Our previous coach Sandeep Patil (former Indian test cricketer) always encouraged us to get closer and closer to the target as you never know when things change in one-dayers. He used to tell us never to give up till last,” Kamande recalled.
On Obuya missing his maiden century in a World Cup fixture by two runs in the last over of the innings, Kamande said it was unfortunate that he couldn’t get them though he tried his best.
“He was unlucky though he played through the innings to build solid partnerships first with Mishra and 86 with Thomas Odoyo for the fifth wicket. I hope he will get in the next game,” Kamande said.