Last year, Namibia received news that we will host an international qualifying tournament in April 2019. It has been confirmed that the ICC World Cricket League Division 2 will indeed be held from the 18th to the 28th April in the Land of the Brave, followed by ICC T20 World Cup Qualifier hosted by Uganda from the 17th to the 26th May 2019.
The competition in April is the final qualifiers for the ICC CWC League 2, which is a feeder event towards the 2023 World Cup, and a significant league in itself. The May tournament is a regional qualification round on the pathway to the 2020 WT20 World Cup. Two qualifiers from the May Tournament will progress to the final 14 team qualifying event to be held in 2019 or early 2020.
The April fixtures will be hosted at Wanderers Cricket field, Windhoek Afrikaans Private School field and Trustco United field.
Cricket Namibia has appointed a new Head Coach Pierre de Bruyn, on the 1st January 2019. We are confident that Pierre was not only the best candidate, but he is also the best fit for our future ambitions for cricket. He has had significant success with Leicestershire with white ball cricket and has had various coaching roles. Pierre played provincial cricket in South Africa for the Titans and the Dolphins and represented South Africa in the Hong Kong Sixes.
Cricket Namibia announced the appointment of Albie Morkel as a specialist coaching consultant with effect from 1st January 2019. Christopher Coombe, one of the players vying for the National Team expressed his gratitude and says, “It is really exciting to have Albie Morkel on board. He just came out of retirement, with nearly 20 years of First-Class experience and played over 50 matches for South Africa at the highest level- so the experience and knowledge he brings to the team is incomparable. The whole team gets along well with Albie, and he works exceptionally well with Pierre de Bruyn.”
The squad is working extremely hard as a team since the beginning of the year for the upcoming events. Players are bonding well, and everyone is adapting to the culture that the team is creating. The team has already shown personal growth following a month of hard work, so if the team can build on this for the next 3 months; then ruthless, competitive cricket should be expected from the National Team.
The team travelled to Botswana last year whereby they did not play their best of cricket, but nonetheless did qualify for the WT20 regional qualifier which was the primary objective.
The games were very challenging for the squad, Coombe says, “The conditions were different from what we are used to, but if we want to be a reckoned on the International scene, we need to put that aside and play the best cricket in any conditions.”
The National Men’s team has matured and is still growing to be a better squad. It is trusted that with the help of Albie Morkel and Pierre de Bruyn, there will be new strategies and learning of new techniques to create the best squad.
Prepared by Natalia Nauyoma