The Walvis Bay Salt Eagles will look to bounce back from their four wicket defeat to Austrailia when they face Sri Lanka today in their second U19 Cricket World Cup game.
The Namibian outfit will go up against a confident Sri Lanka team who beat Zimbabwe by 39 runs in their group C opener on Sunday.
This left the two African teams at the bottom of the group.
Austrailia, like Sri Lanka, have two points, but lead group C with a higher net run rate.
Namibia face Sri Lanka at the Diamond Oval in Kimberley, South Africa, and have to beat the Asians if they want to stand a chance to qualify for the super sixes.
Team manager and vice president of Cricket Namibia, Pollycarpus Negongo says the mood in the camp is positive enough to outperform Sri Lanka.
“We’re quite positive about this one […] we’re positive about everything that we do. We’re just going to go out and play the brand of cricket we know. Play hard cricket and see if we can get across the line there,” he said.
Negongo did, however, note that the junior Eagles could have done much better against Australia on Monday.
“A bit of a disappointing showing with the bat, but we made amends with the ball and the field […] Had we put another 30 or 40 runs more on the board, that game would’ve been ours,” he said.
In the first innings of that game, Namibia was dismissed for 91 runs in 33.1 overs with Callum Vilder (4 for 17) and Tom Straker (3 for 16) leading Australia’s bowling attack. Despite Zacheo van Vuuren’s top score of 29 runs, Australia managed to limit Namibia with the bat.
In the second innings, Namibia’s Jack Brassell and Hanro Badenhorst mounted an impressive fight back, reducing the opposition to 57 for 5 in 13 overs.
Australian captain Hugh Weibgen’s unbeaten 39 runs off 43 balls guided them to a four-wicket win in the 20th over.
Namibian captain, Alexander Volschenk admitted that the Australian game was tough, but taking note of the wicket fast enough helped the team.
“We noticted that pace and bounce are our friend so then we used that to our advantage and that helped us a lot […] The wicket was spicy, it had kind of like a tennis ball bounce so that was quite interesting,” he said.
Going into the Sri Lanka game, Volschenk expressed confidence in his team.
“I believe in all my teammates and I can assure you that we will give everything, all the time until the end,” he added.
After today’s game, the Walvis Bay Salt Eagles play their next game against Zimbabwe on Saturday in their last group C encounter.
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