Canada claim morale-boosting win
Canada won the battle of the Group A minnows as they recorded a five-wicket win over Kenya at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi.
Jimmy Hansra top-scored with 70 and shared a valuable partnership of 132 for the fourth wicket with Canada captain Ashish Bagai, who finished unbeaten on 64.
Their alliance allowed Canada to recover from 48 for three and chase down their target of 199 with 27 balls to spare, although Hansra benefited from significant fortune three balls into his innings as Seren Waters put down a simple chance at mid-on.
Bagai said: "Jimmy played a fantastic knock with me and both of us did a great job to get us over the line.
"It wasn't an easy wicket but once you're in, it's easy to rotate the strike. We did that pretty well and Jimmy got the odd boundary to take some pressure off of me.
"We were fortunate to have no run rate pressure really. We got a decent start and kept up with the run rate right the way through.”
Kenya had also got off to a bad start with the bat and slumped to 57 for five before contrasting half-centuries from Tanmay Mishra and Thomas Odoyo lifted them to a respectable score.
Both batsmen made 51, with Mishra largely content to work the ball around and Odoyo adopting a more agricultural approach in an entertaining innings containing five fours and a six.
Paceman Henry Osinde was the pick of the bowlers for Canada with career-best figures of 4-26 and it was he who made the initial inroads as Kenya struggled to cope with the swinging ball after electing to bat first.
"Henry did a fantastic job first up," Bagai added. "We knew we could swing the new ball for a couple of overs and he took advantage of that, got some early wickets and put them under pressure.
Maurice Ouma edged to Harvar Baidwan at second slip and Waters was bowled off his pads before David Obuya got a regulation edge through to Bagai.
Collins Obuya looked in excellent touch as he raced to 31, but he was then bowled attempting an ungainly heave off Baidwan.
New batsman Mishra survived an early review after being struck on the pads by Rizwan Cheema, who then won an lbw decision against Steve Tikolo despite replays suggesting the batsman may have got an inside edge.
Mishra and Kamande accumulated steadily thereafter, although Kenya’s captain appeared uncomfortable against the slow bowlers and was caught behind for 22 attempting to cut leg-spinner Balaji Rao.
With Kenya still in peril on 109 for six, Odoyo decided attack was the best form of defence and connected with a series of lusty blows off the front foot as he dominated a partnership of 57 with Mishra for the seventh wicket.
Mishra also attempted to lift the run-rate upon reaching 50, but got a leading edge to mid-off as he looked to hit John Davison over the top.
The impressive Osinde returned to remove Nehemiah Odhiambo’s off stump and, although Odoyo reached 50 in the final over, Kenya were unable to make full use of their batting powerplay, adding just 19 runs and losing their remaining two wickets.
Elijah Otieno holed out to Hansra at wide long-on to give Cheema his second wicket, while a superb Baidwan yorker shattered the stumps of Odoyo.
Cheema, who successfully reviewed an lbw decision that went against him first ball, showed plenty of aggressive intent after being promoted to open for Canada but was bowled for 17 when he failed to connect with a front-foot pull off Otieno.
Kamande’s direct hit from mid-on then accounted for Zubin Surkari before Ruvindu Gunasekera threw his wicket away in farcical fashion.
For reasons only known to himself, the left-hander set off for a run after wicketkeeper Ouma had collected a leg-side wide off James Ngoche and, although he immediately realised his error and turned back, he was unable to make his ground in time.
Ngoche was denied the wicket of Hansra two balls later as Waters failed to take a routine catch and Canada took full advantage.
Skipper Bagai was rarely troubled as he progressed patiently past 50, while Hansra took the attack to the spinners and collected straight sixes off Kamande and Tikolo.
Hansra was unable to survive a second chance at mid-on and was caught by Ngoche off Nehemiah Odhiambo with 19 runs required.
Odhiambo also bowled Tyson Gordon around his legs for three, but by that stage the damage had been done.