Nigeria surprised many with qualifying for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup qualifiers and once again wants to make a statement on the global stage.
Nigeria made its T20I debut earlier this year when it took place in the final of the Men’s T20 World Cup in the Africa region. Their young squad – six of the 15 players are under 20 years old – will not be worried, and they will no doubt try to make one or two surprises along the way.
With 37th place in the MRF Tires ICC Men’s T20I Team Ranking, Nigeria is the lowest-ranked team in the tournament. But underestimate them at your peril as they have already defeated higher-ranking teams in their short T20I history.
Readiness meets opportunity. Nigeria National Team AKA Yellow Greens pose with the official Kit for the ICC T-20 World Cup Qualifier taking place in the UAE…Nigeria will play their first game against Jersey on the 19th of October…. pic.twitter.com/yX0yxPM1l9— Nigeria Cricket Federation (@cricket_nigeria) October 11, 2019
How did Nigeria get In?
Nigeria qualified for the tournament by finishing third in the final of the T20 World Cup in Africa. While initially, only the first two progressed, the exclusion of Zimbabwe from qualifying meant that Nigeria flew with Namibia and Kenya to the United Arab Emirates.
T20 World Cup History
Nigeria has never reached a T20 World Cup. This is her first T20 World Cup qualifier.
Ademola Onikoyi – the Nigerian captain is also an important part of the hitting team. His 49 against Ghana, scored with only 35 balls and four-six, is the best a Nigerian batsman has ever seen in registering a first T20I with fifty balls. He will consider this tournament as the place to go.
One to watch
Sylvester Okpe – Appointed Vice-Champion of the tournament, although he is only 18 years old. Okpe was a player at the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup Africa Qualifier, where he led Nigeria to a shock qualifier for the 2020 ICC U19 Cricket World Cup. His nine goals and 111 runs were as crucial as his leadership qualities. as his team remained unbeaten through their five games.
19 October: v Jersey, Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi
21 October: v Canada, Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi
23 October: v Oman, Tolerance Oval, Abu Dhabi
24 October: v United Arab Emirates, Tolerance Oval, Abu Dhabi
26 October: v Ireland, Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi
27 October: v Hong Kong, Tolerance Oval, Abu Dhabi
Ademola Onikoyi (c), Abiodun Abioye, Sesan Adedeji, Vincent Adewoye, Daniel Ajekun, Chima Akachukwu, Yusuf Gershon, Daniel Gim, Segun Ogundipe, Isaac Okpe, Sylvester Okpe, Chimezie Onwizilike, Leke Oyede, Sulaimon Runsewe, Mohameed Taiwo