Kenya's World Cup legend Collins Obuya retires after 23-year-old international cricket career

New Delhi, March 24 (IANS) Kenya all-rounder Collins Obuya, who played a starring role in their dream ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2003 campaign, had called time on his 23-year-old international career.

Obuya who had made his international debut back in 2001 against the West Indies, retired after featuring in his side’s 106-run defeat against Uganda in the third-place play-off of the African Games.

The 42-year-old was Kenya’s leading run-getter in the tournament, with 184 runs from five innings.

“I have decided to retire from the game after 23 years. It’s been a big honour playing for Kenya,” Obuya stated after the game, as quoted by ICC.

“I want to thank everyone, my teammates and my family who have been there for me in good times and hard times. It has been a lovely career for me, to have been able to play that long. I am very proud of my career, but it’s time to concentrate on my coaching back home and do what good I can for cricket,” he added.

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With 2044 ODI runs, Obuya is one of the four Kenya players to have scored over 2000 runs in the format, before they were stripped of ODI status. And his 1794 T20I runs are the most by any Kenya batter. He also picked up 60 international wickets.

The leg-spinning allrounder’s best ODI knock came against Australia in the 2011 World Cup, an unbeaten 98 that unfortunately ended up in a losing cause. Following Kenya’s dismal 2011 World Cup campaign, Obuya replaced Jimmy Kamande as their captain. He resigned two years later in 2013 after the team failed to qualify for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2014.

In the 2003 Cricket World Cup, Obuya’s 5-24 helped the African side upend a much stronger Sri Lanka team. With wickets of Aravinda de Silva, Kumar Sangakkara, and Mahela Jayawardene in the game, he helped Kenya to a 53-run win.

Crucial points from this win helped Kenya reach the Super Six stage of the tournament, and eventually the semifinals, becoming the only non-Test playing nation to have achieved the feat.

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