A GREAT century by Craig Williams led the Namibian Eagles to a thrilling 19-run victory against Emerging South Africa at the Wanderers field on Saturday.
Namibia amassed 338 for four wickets off their 50 overs, with Williams scoring 139 not out and JJ Smit 61, while the visitors put up a spirited run chase, but eventually fell 19 runs short of the target as they reached 319/9 off their 50 overs.
The victory gave Namibia a 2-1 victory in the three-match series, as they completed the double over the visitors, after earlier winning the T20 series 3-0.
After winning the toss, Namibian elected to bat and got off to a good start with Stephan Baard and Zane Green putting on 63 runs for the first wicket before Green was bowled by Tshepo Ntuli for 26 (1×6, 3×4).
Baard followed soon after for 33 (1×6, 4×4), and when Gerhard Erasmus was dismissed for 20, the total stood at 112/3 after 28 overs.
JJ Smit joined Craig Williams to put Namibia firmly in charge with a century partnership, as they added 139 runs for the fourth wicket at more than nine runs per over, before Smit was caught on the boundary for 61 off 48 balls (4×6, 3×3).
Nicol Loftie Eaton joined Williams and played the supporting role as Williams continued the onslaught with a brilliant innings.
His century came up off 108 balls, while he remained not out on 139 off 119, which included 11 massive sixes and five fours.
Loftie Eaton remained not out on 23 off 20 balls, as they added an unbroken fifth wicket partnership of 87 runs off only six overs at more than 14 runs to the over.
Tshepo Ntuli was Emerging SA’s best bowler, taking two wickets for 37 runs off seven overs.
Emerging SA gave chase from the start, with Grant Roelofsen and Matthew Breetzke putting on 61 off 10,2 overs, but Bernard Scholtz halted them in their tracks, bowling Kabelo Sekhukhune for nine and Sinethemba Qesile for a duck, and when Stephan Baard ran out Wandile Makwetu with a great direct throw, the visitors suddenly had four wickets down for 98 runs.
Breetzke however went on to score his century before being run out for 114 off 127 balls (3×6, 8×4), while Delano Potgieter added 52, Jason Smith 63 and Bryce Parsons 32 further down the innings, but it was not enough as they fell 19 runs short of the target.
JJ Smit was Namibia’s best bowler, taking 3/64 off 10 overs, while Bernard Scholtz took 2/47.
Craig Williams won the man of the match award, while Gerhard Erasmus won the batsman of the series award after scoring 222 runs at an average of 37,00. Nicol Loftie Eaton won the bowler of the series award after taking nine wickets for 137 runs.