The first World Cricket League Championship match between Namibia and Hong Kong may have been a closely fought contest, but the second was anything but as Hong Kong cruised to an eight wicket win in Windhoek.
Namibian captain Nicolaas Scholtz won the toss and chose to bat first. If he was hoping to see his team build a challenging total with the first use of the pitch he was sadly mistaken as the Namibian batting order proceeded to return to the dressing room in something of a procession.
Tanwir Afzal and Haseeb Amjad were almost unplayable as they tore through the Namibian ranks. When JP Kotze was out from the first ball of the twelfth over, Namibia found themselves in serious trouble on 15-7. Namibia though have depth to their batting ranks, and the lower order, led by Raymond van Schoor made something of a recovery.
It was van Schoor who top scored for the Namibians with an unbeaten 36. Particularly stubborn for Hong Kong was the last wicket pairing of van Schoor and Bernard Scholtz, which put on 42 for the tenth wicket to take the Namibian total to 109. Tanwir Afzal took 5-17 for Hong Kong.
Hong Kong then had thirteen overs to bat before the lunch interval, and Irfan Ahmed got them off to a quick start with 36 from 38 balls before he was out in the ninth over. Opening partner Roy Lamsam had contributed just three at that point, and he ensured no more wickets were lost before lunch along with number three Skhawat Ali.
From 49-1 at the lunch break, Lamsam and Ali took the score to 93 before Ali was caught behind. Lamsam was unbeaten at the end of the match, scoring 41. Nizakat Khan hit the winning runs with a six to complete an eight wicket win.
For these two teams attention now turns to the World Twenty20 Qualifier in July. Both teams will be in Ireland for the first round, though they will be playing their warm-up matches in Scotland. The next World Cricket League Championship matches will be in the Netherlands next month when the Dutch take on Papua New Guinea in Amstelveen on the 22nd and 24th.
Namibia lost to Hong Kong by 8 wickets
Wanderers Cricket Ground, Hong Kong, 17 May
Namibia 109 (36.1 overs, R van Schoor 36*, Tanwir Afzal 5-17) Hong Kong 113-2 (36.2 overs, R Lamsam 41*, Irfan Ahmed 36)