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Cricket Namibia builds for the future

Sport - Cricket | 2018-02-22
by Helge Schütz

Gerhard Erasmus was Namibia's top run scorer at the WCL Division 2 tournament.

ALTHOUGH deeply disappointed at not making the final qualifier for the 2019 Cricket World Cup, Namibia staged a great tournament and gained a lot of experience, and will now build towards the future.

Those were the views of Cricket Namibia president Richard Frankle following completion of the World Cricket League Division 2 tournament in Windhoek last week.

The UAE won the tournament after beating Nepal by seven runs in the final and the two teams will now go through to the final 2019 World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe next month.

Namibia were still in with a chance of making the final when they took on the UAE in their final Pool match on 14 February, but they lost that encounter by 19 runs, and eventually finished fourth after losing the third place playoff to Canada by 49 runs.

Frankle said it was a great tournament and that they had learnt a lot of lessons.

“The boys put in a lot of effort, each game was really close and we were living on the edge for the whole tournament, but unfortunately we just couldn't pull it through. But a lot of lessons were learned and a lot of experience was gained. We played with a couple of youngsters from the u19 World Cup and they performed admirably, so I think we gained a lot of positives, and although we didn't make the World Cup Qualifier, I believe Namibia learnt a lot from this tournament,” he said.

“It was a fantastic tournament and we are really pleased with the organisation and how competitive it was. In the last group matches Nepal beat Canada off the last ball of the match to make the final, while Namibia were edged out by UAE, while the final was once again very close with UAE beating Nepal by seven runs,” he said.

Frankle said they would learn from their mistakes to build for the future.

“We look forward to the future, to learning from our mistakes and building on what we have, so that we will be ready the next time around.

“We'll be playing in the Intercontinental Cup and the World Cricket League again next year, so we look forward to that. We've got a year to prepare and work hard, a year to develop some more youngsters, so we have to apply our minds and be ready for that,” he said.

Despite not making the final World Cup Qualifier, Namibian players fared well in the individual statistics.

Gerhard Erasmus was the third highest run scorer with 229 runs at an average of 57,25 and a top score of 66, while Craig Williams was the fourth highest run scorer with 225 runs at an average of 45,00 and a top score of 82.

Bernard Scholtz was the fifth highest wicket taker with 11 wickets at an average of 11,81, while JJ Smit came seventh with 11 wickets at an average of 26,36.

Meanwhile, there have been some major repercussions from the tournament, ranging from financial gains for the winners to resignations for the losers.

The Nepalese team have been received as heroes in their country, with their Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli hosting the team at his official residence on Tuesday and announcing a reward of 300 000 rupees for each team member, which amounts to about N$34 000 each.

Kenya, though, who lost all their matches, saw a clear-out as Cricket Kenya's chairperson Jackie Janmohammed, the national captain Rakep Patel and the national coach Thomas Odoyo all resigned.

“I chose to resign and give someone else a chance, because I was not making any difference. The team had not improved in any way and the results of our last assignment were disastrous,” Odoyo was quoted as saying by standardmedia.co.ke

“There was no need to continue holding on to the position as it was clear that my way of coaching had failed,” he added.

  • Title: Cricket Namibia builds for the future
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