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By: Dwight Links

Dominant all-round play by Namibia saw them thrash Rwanda by 43 runs in the second match of day two in Kwibuka Twenty20 Tournament at Gahanga International Cricket Stadium, Kigali on Monday (June 7). Playing their first international match against the host nation, the 23rd-ranked Namibia were ruthless with the bat, ball, and in the field. Sifa Ingabire’s efforts with ball and bat were inspiring but not enough for Rwanda.


Namibia was asked to bat first by Rwanda, who won the toss for the second time in as many matches. Opener Adri van der Merwe, after missing out in the first match, went after Rwanda’s bowling attack in the power play. Van der Merwe scored a quickfire 29 off just 22 balls before falling to off-spinner Ingabire’s first ball of the tournament. Yasmeen Khan at three failed to impress yet again as she tried to put away the full toss offered by Ingabire and missed it spectacularly.


Ingabire’s first over put a break on the ever-attacking Namibian batting and they lost wickets in regular intervals. Arrasta Diergaardt stuck around for 15 overs and scored 20 runs but fell for 20 off 34 balls. From six for 74 in the 15th over, Namibia added 27 more in the last over to become the first team in this edition of the Kwibuka T20 tournament to score over 100, thanks to Sune Witmann (22 not out).


For Rwanda, Ingabire took three wickets for 10 runs. The task of chasing 101 for victory, which would have been Rwanda’s fourth-highest chase in international cricket got a lot more difficult when Namibia opening bowlers Wilka Mwatile and Kayleen Green ripped through Rwanda’s top order. Rwanda lost four wickets before any runs were scored off the bat. The Mwatile in-swinger that got rid of Cathia Uwamahoro was particularly impressive.


From the precarious position of four wickets for two runs, Marie Bimenyimana, Rwanda’s only player with an international half century, tried to rebuild the innings. However, Namibia’s disciplined bowling meant Rwanda could not keep the scoreboard ticking. Only Ingabire (12), Henriette Ishimwe (12) and Alice Ikuzwe (11) managed to score in double digits.

For Namibia Mwatile, Green and Victoria Hamunyela took two wickets apiece.


Scores in brief:

Namibia 101/6 in 20 overs (Adri van der Merwe 29, Sune Wittmann 22*; Sifa Ingabire 3/10) beat Rwanda 58/8 in 20 overs (Sifa Ingabire 12, Henriette Ishimwe 12; Wilka Mwatile 2/7) by 43 runs

Julia Heita

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