Namibia continued their run of good form as they destroyed South African side Titans in the first T20 match of the series. Prior to this, they had won six out of their last seven matches in the month of August, which included six back-to-back wins against Zimbabwe Emerging Players.
Titans are an established team in South Africa and cannot be considered as push overs in any way. They have the likes of Dean Elgar, Theunis de Bruyn and Aaron Phangiso in their ranks. Titans won the solitary 50-over match by 34 runs on 28th August, but it was a completely different story in the shorter format of the game.
Namibia batted first and put on a total of 140 runs on the board. Stephan Baard 62(49) was the star of the show and he was given a helping hand by JJ Smit’s quickfire 23. Veteran South African bowler Aaron Phangiso, who picked up three scalps, would have been pleased by their bowling effort but the Titans’ batting performance left a lot to be desired.
The scoreboard pressure played a huge factor as the South Africa-based team were bowled out for just 43 runs. It was a sublime display of smart bowling by the Namibians. None of the Titans batsmen managed to register double figures and as a result Namibia won the match by a staggering margin of 97 runs.
This is a great sign for the African country going into the T20I World Cup qualifiers. They are placed in Group A alongside Sri Lanka, Netherlands and Ireland. Namibia has a golden opportunity to qualify for their first ever T20I World Cup this year as they have been playing some good cricket recently.
In 2021, Namibia have won 3 out of 3 T20I matches. As two teams will qualify from each qualifier group, Namibia will have to fancy their chances this time around. They might not have a great cricketing history, but this is Namibia’s time to make it to the big stage of world cricket.