With the T20 World Cup underway, the first week of the competition brings tremendous value to the Associate teams as they strive to earn places in the Super 12 stage of the tournament.
Today, we at Cricwizz would be letting you know about Namibia's rise in recent years, their squad, and also their top performers to date.
Namibia became an Associate Member of the ICC in 1992 and they also featured in the 2003 Cricket World Cup. As far as T20Is are concerned, it took Namibia until 2019 to play their first T20I, with the nation earning full T20 International status as ICC granted it to all its members.
From then, any T20Is in which Namibia participated were considered as full T20Is. Their first was against Ghana in May 2019 in the Regional Final of the 2018-19 ICC World Twenty20 Africa Qualifier tournament.
Namibia won the match comfortably by nine wickets. Let's have a look at some of their T20 records.
Namibia's highest team total is 240/3 against Botswana and their highest individual scorer was Jean-Pierre Kotze.
When it's about featuring in the Qualifiers for the T20 World Cup, Namibia have tried before but their best finish was in the year 2012 (3rd place), finishing in 10th, 7th, and 4th places respectively in 2013, 2015, and 2019 respectively but now this year is undoubtedly their most special year.
They have already qualified and their next target would be to earn a spot in the Super 12, something that would be huge in Namibia's history of Cricket and it would only motivate the Namibians to come forward and produce more quality and competition in the sport.
Gerhard Erasmus, Craig Williams, and Stephan Baard are the top three run-getters for Namibia in T20Is (522, 508, 496 respectively).
Coming to the bowling department, it's Jan Frylinck, Bernard Scholtz, and Christi Viljoen with 35, 28, and 20 T20I wickets respectively. Namibia's favorite T20I opponents are Botswana, having beaten them in 5 out of 5 matches.
Namibia skipper Gerhard Erasmus was pretty confident and he feels that his side won't back down from expressing themselves on the pitch because they know how big an opportunity this is.
"Obviously the T20 World Cup is a massive event for Cricket Namibia,” Erasmus said following the fixture reveal. “It is the first major event we have qualified for in 18 years so it will be of big value to us. The players are looking forward to it being a massive event in their lives. it could be something that propels their careers forward.”
Namibia belongs to Group A alongside Sri Lanka, Ireland, Netherlands. As far as their best performances are concerned, Namibia did not have the best starts while approaching the T20 World Cup, losing heavily to Scotland and Oman in the warm-up matches.
However, Namibia made a great comeback in the UAE Summer T20 Bash, beating PNG, Scotland, and UAE comfortably. This shows that if they stick to a plan they could really play some exciting cricket and even produce results.
Namibia thrashed Uganda, the visitors on a T20 tour 3-0 in which Namibia easily dictated the matches and the moments within.
All this is evidence that Namibia are surely a team to look for and if they manage to keep their consistency we may see them causing some upsets for sure. Will Namibia make it to the Super 12?
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