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Tikolo & Co face injury worries

Kenya's hopes are on four players including captain Steve Tikolo who are waiting to be declared fit.

india Updated: Mar 20, 2003 16:02 IST

Kenya hope that four of their first-choice players including captain Steve Tikolo will be declared fit for Thursday's World Cup semi-final against India despite struggling with injuries.

Coach Sandeep Patil told a news conference: "We are keeping our fingers crossed.

"Maurice is having problems with his thigh. Kennedy's elbow is still sore. Steve is just recovering, not 100 percent.

"I hope they are match fit tomorrow."

Odumbe missed Kenya's last Super Six match against Australia on Saturday, as did all-rounder Thomas Odoyo with a hamstring niggle.

Otieno was taken to hospital after being hit on his left elbow by pace bowler Brett Lee in that five-wicket defeat. Tikolo has been suffering from fever and tonsilitis.

Patil, a former India test batsman, added: "I am so proud of these boys.

"They (Odumbe and Odoyo) were not fit against Zimbabwe," he said, referring to the seven-wicket victory which made sure of Kenya's place in the semi-finals.

"But they never complained, never showed these injuries and went on to win the game."

Kenya are the first non-test playing nation to reach a World Cup semi-final.


Patil said his team's underdog tag could be an advantage on Thursday.

"It does help being underdogs, although I am well aware of the strength the Indian team carries."

Tikolo, who made his first good score with a half-century against Australia, said Kenya had drawn confidence from their previous meeting with India in the Super Sixes.

He said: "The way we made 225 and then bowled nicely with our seamers upfront, we will carry these things into the next game."

Kenya reduced India to three for 24 before captain Saurav Ganguly scored an unbeaten century.

Patil added that the team had also shown character against Australia, scoring 174 after a Brett Lee hat-trick had reduced them to three for three.

"It didn't happen in just one game, it happened right through the tournament," Patil said.

First Published: Mar 20, 2003 11:43 IST