Namibia wins first World Cricket League match

WINDHOEK: The Namibian national cricket team started the World Cricket League (WCL) Division 2 tournament on a high note, winning its first match against Kenya by five wickets with 64 balls remaining.

The match was the first of Pepsi International Cricket Council (ICC)-sanctioned tournament that officially commenced here on Saturday.

The event is expected to end on 24 January 2014.

Namibia’s breakthrough came after the Kenyan opening batsman Alex Auma was sent off to the pitch without scoring any runs for his team, after being caught Leg Before Wicket (LBW) by Namibia’s Sarel Burger with the very first ball of the match.

Speaking to members of the media after their victory, Namibian captain Nicolaas Scholtz said they had a good start, and managed to consolidate and make use of the pressure that came their way.

“They (Namibia) have set us up well, and bowled well,” he said.

On his part, Kenyan captain Rakep Patel said losing the first wicket was sad for them and a downfall for his team.

“We are not going to underestimate the other teams; they are all strong and we are going to put in all our efforts,” he said.

In other matches, The Netherlands won against Canada with 67 runs.

The Netherlands scored 251 runs for the loss of seven wickets in their 50 overs, while Canada could only score 184 runs in 46 overs.

Uganda also emerged victorious after winning by two runs against Nepal.

Nepal could only score 144 runs in their 50 overs, while Uganda scored 146 with one ball remaining.

The games are being played at the Wanderers’ cricket grounds, Wanderers Affies sports grounds, and United Sports Club.

The top two teams will be promoted to WCL Division 1, where they will join Ireland, Scotland, Afghanistan, United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong and Papua New Guinea.

The top two teams will further receive a financial boost for their efforts, and will also be allowed to participate in the ICC Intercontinental Cup and the ICC World League Championships which will run from 2015 to 2017.

Namibia will lock horns against Uganda on Sunday also at the Wanderers field, while Nepal will take on The Netherlands at the United Sports Club; and Kenya against Canada at the Wanderers Affies cricket grounds.