Eagles in cruise control

The Richelieu Namibian Eagles notched up their fourth consecutive victory after beating Kenya by six wickets in their ICC T20 World Cup Qualifier match at the United field yesterday. 

After restricting Kenya to 104 for six wickets, the Eagles comfortably reached the winning target for the loss of four wickets, with close to five overs to spare.

After winning the toss and sending Kenya in to bat, Namibian captain Gerhard Erasmus made an early breakthrough when he caught and bowled Rushabhvardhan Patel for one run. 

Namibia’s bowlers maintained the pressure as Helao Ya France dismissed Collins Obuya for 15, and when Tangeni Lungameni dismissed Pushkar Sharmafor 5, they were struggling at 41 for three wickets. 

Irfan Karim and Sachin Bhudia, however, revived Kenya’s innings with a 40-run partnership, before David Wiese bowled the latter for 18. 

Karim went on to top score with 43 runs off 47 balls (2×4, 1×6), but he didn’t receive much support as they were restricted to a modest total of 104. 

Lungameni was Namibia’s top bowler, taking two wickets for 19 runs, while Wiese, Erasmus, Ya France and JJ Smit took one wicket each. 

In reply, Namibia lost some early wickets, with Michael van Lingen (5), Erasmus (3) and Nicol Loftie-Eaton all going cheaply, while Niko Davin made 19, as they stumbled to 47/4. 

Jan Frylinck and JJ Smit, however, led Namibia to victory with an unbeaten 59-run fifth wicket partnership as they reached the target with 28 balls to spare. 

Frylinck was in fine form, scoring 57 not out off 41 balls (5×4, 1×6), while Smit scored 14 not out.

Zimbabwe, meanwhile, bounced back from their five-wicket defeat to Uganda on Sunday when they thumped Rwanda by 144 runs yesterday. 

Zimbabwe amassed a huge 215 for four wickets off their 20 overs, with Sikandar Raza and Tadiwanashe Marumani putting them on their way with a 99-run opening wicket stand. Raza scored 58 off 36 balls (6×4, 4×6), while Marumani scored 50 from 31 (4×4, 3×6).

Ryan Burl added 44 not out from 21 balls (5×4, 3×6) as they reached an imposing total. 

Rwanda’s innings got off to a disastrous start as they lost Oscar Manishimwe for a golden duck, and with more wickets tumbling, they crashed to 15 for five wickets.

Didier Ndikubwimana with 30 and Martin Akayezu with 17 revived their innings with a 48-run partnership, before the whole team was skittled out for a meagre 71 runs.

Raza, who took 3/3, and Richard Ngarava with 3/11 were Zimbabwe’s best bowlers. 

Uganda, meanwhile, beat Nigeria by nine wickets yesterday, after dismissing Nigeria for 99 and then reaching the target for the loss of only one wicket. 

Namibia now lead the log on eight points from four matches, followed by Kenya and Uganda on six points each, and Zimbabwe on four points.

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