Namibia beat USA by 139 runs in a rain-affected match after a classy century from Jean Pierre Kotze and a five-wicket haul from Zhivago Groenewald.
Kotze’s 136 off 109 balls – the first one-day international century for Namibia – lifted his side to 287/8 in 49 overs, the new highest total in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup League Two. It was a difficult chase for USA, who were bowled out for 142, in Match 10 of the league at Lauderhill on Friday, 20 September.
USA won the toss and had elected to field. Unfortunately, heavy rain soon after delayed play and resulted in the loss of an over.
JP Kotze made the first century of the week © ICC/Peter Della Penna
Jessy Singh had Karl Birkenstock bowled in the second over for a duck, but they were denied any more early wickets. Kotze, the No.3 batsman, settled in to become a nightmare for the bowlers. Even though showers stayed away for the rest of the innings, Kotze made sure it rained boundaries. He became the first ODI centurion for Namibia as well as in the competition. Kotze’s knock included 11 fours and eight sixes.
Namibia made 80 runs in the Powerplay. USA’s breakthrough came in the 28th over, when Jessy dismissed the dangerous Kotze and captain Gerhard Erasmus in the same over. USA skipper Saurabh Netravalkar took a stunning catch to dismiss his Namibian counterpart.
But just as USA clawed their way back in, Jan Frylinck (60) boosted the total.
USA were set a target of 282 in 47 overs. They needed to bat long, but lost wickets at regular intervals. In the third over, Xavier Marshall fell to Jan Frylinck, to a stunning catch from Groenewald. Jaskaran Malhotra and Steven Taylor’s budding partnership was halted in the ninth over, and in the next, Monank Patel was dismissed for a duck, his middle stump cleaned up by Helao Ya France.
Aaron Jones (44) tried to dig in, but Groenewald ran through the line-up. USA suffered their first defeat in the tournament, bowled out in 37 overs.
The result put USA second on the table, behind Scotland on net run-rate. Namibia, with one win, are fourth, while PNG, the other team in the tri-series in this round, are still without a victory.
Player of the Match, Jean Pierre Kotze’s said: “I started off when I got a free hit, which went away for a six. In our batting plans, we talked about batting positively after we batted badly against USA in the first match. So, we just went upwards, and it was one of those days where it just clicked for me. I got one or two away and that kept the momentum going and it was a good feeling. When me and Stephen were batting, I kept saying I will keep on going; I will keep on playing my shots. It was nice to be out there and hit the ball as cleanly as I did today. I am very glad to be the first centurion in the League 2, and I do not plan it being my last. This is our first win for Namibia, and we hope we build on our momentum against PNG.”
Sunday September 22: PNG v Namibia (09:45)
Monday September 23: Namibia v PNG (09:45)