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Quit talking and improve our cricket

Kenya’s elimination from the 2015 World Cup qualifiers early this week was a new low for the sport considering the team previously made it to every global championship since 1996.

The turn of events followed a miraculous scrape through to the Super Six stage of the tournament, which gave Kenyans hope that perhaps not all was lost. But this was quickly reversed by the loss to the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Scotland hit Kenya to secure its third World Cup appearance yesterday while United Arab Emirates (UAE) also booked a ticket for next year’s 50-overs tournament in Australia and New Zealand.

This may be a bitter pill to swallow for die-hard fans, but I beg to differ. Contrary to popular belief, this could a good thing, as it will provide a chance to re-evaluate the situation and do a full bug report on what went wrong and fix it before all is lost.

In sports, restructuring is a natural process and is necessary when old tactics no longer work. It provides a chance to rebuild from scratch, and forge new systems that can sustain the team for a long period.

Unlike most sports in Kenya, cricket’s problem has nothing to do with finances since it has been semi-professional sport for over 10 years.

Veterans such as Martin Suji, Thomas Odoyo and coach Thomas Odoyo  blamed inexperience and lack of a killer instinct on the part of the young players as one of the reasons for the slump.

It is hoped that the exit from the World Cup will now provide the young players with ample time to improve their game.

In case there is a need to make any managerial changes, this is the right time when the fraternity has gone to the drawing board.

This has worked for other teams in situations such as those of the cricket team. Examples abound in the Kenya 15s rugby team, football clubs Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards, and the national team Harambee Stars.

For the football teams, the problem was largely leadership wrangles, mismanagement and failing to motivate players.

But with fairly stable leaders in office after elections, getting the right players and coaches together with working systems, things are looking up. It is no longer a constant gloomy picture in football and rugby.

This could just do the trick for our cricketers as well.