Cricket: Rwanda, Tanzania make bright start to T20 Kwibuka25 tourney

Rwanda's national women cricket team. / Courtesy

Hosts Rwanda and Tanzania got off to bright starts on Tuesday as they registered victories against Mali and Uganda, respectively, on the opening day of this year’s Kwibuka25 Women Cricket T20 tournament.

The tournament is hosted at Gahanga Cricket Oval.

Opener Monica Pascal starred for Tanzania with 53 runs off 53 balls as her side overcame regional archrivals Uganda by 5 runs. Esther Ilukor managed 38 runs off 26 balls, while Rita Musamali posred 19 runs off 32 balls

Needing 114 runs to win, Ugandans only managed 108 runs off 9 balls in the allotted 20.0 overs. Uganda’s opener Damalie Binsingye looked dejected after failing to score a single run as her Ugandan side fell behind the asking rate to see off Tanzania.

Meanwhile, it took Rwanda women just four balls to finish their chase after Mali women were bowled out for a record-low 6. As reported by ESPN, the record for the lowest women's T20I team total before Tuesday was 14.

The Mali innings lasted nine overs, but only one of their six runs came off the bat, courtesy opener Mariam Samake. After that, it was a sequence of ducks, with five extras.

For Rwanda, medium-pacer Josiane Nyirankundineza, 19, picked up three wickets without conceding a run, while Marie Diane Bimenyimana and legspinner Margueritte Vumiliya picked up two wickets apiece.

With the 10 wickets victory, Rwanda’s triumph is a new world record for the biggest margin of victory in terms of balls remaining – 116.

Rwanda returns to action Wednesday with a highly anticipated game against Uganda, whilst lowly Mali face Tanzania. The tournament got underway Tuesday, and runs through Sunday in Kigali.