ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022, Round 1, Group A, Namibia vs Sri Lanka: Jan Frylinck's all round show (44, 2-26), Ben Shikongo's 2-22 and Bernard Scholtz's 2-18 are top three performances. Namibia beat Sri Lanka in first round opener at World Cup.
Brief Scores: Namibia 163/7 (Frylinck 44, Smit 31*, Madushan 2-37) beat Sri Lanka 108 (Shanaka 29, Rajapaksa 20, Wiese 2-16)
Player of the Match: Jan Frylinck – 44(28) & 2-26
The opening game of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 held in Geelong saw a spirited performance by the 14th-ranked T20I team Namibia who got the better of Sri Lanka who were champions in the recently concluded Asia Cup 2022. A world event starts with an upset and sets the tone for things to follow.
The T20 World Cup is back with its eighth edition on the fast and bouncy pitches of Australia for the first time ever in that location since its inception. Defending champions Australia will look to guard their title at home. The first round began with a Group A encounter between Namibia and Sri Lanka, in an attempt to qualify for second stage. A total of 45 match will be played to throne the champions of T20 cricket.
Namibia rattle up 163/7 and bundle out Sri Lanka for 108
Sri Lanka captain Dasun Shanaka won the toss and elected to bowl first. The 2014 T20 World Cup champions Sri Lanka started with a wicket, that of Michael van Lingen (3), in the second over of the innings and Pramod Madushan topped it up by dismissing the second opener, Divan la Cock (9).
Namibia were struggling at 36-3 at the end of five overs. A 41-run stand between Namibia skipper Gerhard Erasmus and Stephand Baard took Namibia to 76-4 at the end of 12 overs. Namibia were not even poised to reach 140, but Jan Frylinck and Johannes Smit had different ideas. A quickfire 70-run stand between Frylinck and Smit off just 34 deliveries took Namibia to 163-7 from their allotted 20 overs.
Sri Lanka lost their fiery openers Kusal Mendis and Pathun Nissanka early in the run chase giving hopes to Namibia. Danushka Gunathalika didn’t disturb the scorers either and Namibia were now fighting with their spirits higher than the inflation across the globe. Namibia could see light at the end of the tunnel. After 10 overs, Sri Lanka were in all sorts of trouble at 72-4, with skipper Dasun Shanaka and Bhanuka Rajapaksa on the crease, rather, Sri Lanka’s last hopes on the crease.
Sri Lanka needed another 89 runs to win in the next 10 overs. The Lankan hopes were set on fire with some smart bowling and field placements from Namibia who went ahead and dismissed the rest of the six Sri Lankan batters within the next 54 deliveries and gave the world the first upset of ICC Men’s T20 Cricket World Cup, defeating the champions of Asia by a mammoth 55 runs.
Let’s take a look at the top three performances from the opening game of the T20 World Cup 2022 between Namibia and Sri Lanka.
Jan “The all-rounder Frylinck” surprises Sri Lanka with 44(28) and 2-26
Jan Frylinck came in when Namibia were four down with just 76 runs on the board at the end of 12 overs. Frylinck saw wickets falling at the other end but did not lose his calm and kept rotating the strike until Johannes Smit came in to bat. At the end of the 16th over Namibia were 106-6 but the cricketing world and Sri Lanka were in for a surprise as they were witness to a match-winning partnership of 70 runs where Frylinck and Smit scored 57 runs in the next 24 deliveries. Frylinck took the best of the best bowlers, including ace leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga, and ensured Namibia posted a respectable total of 163/7 on the board.
Frylinck wasn’t just done yet. He changed his batting powers to bowling ammunition and dismissed Dhananjaya de Silva in the seventh over of the run chase. Left arm fast medium bowler, Frylinck, the man with the golden arm, then dismissed the Sri Lankan captain Shanaka to ensure that Sri Lanka had no chances of comeback into the match and drilled the final nail into Sri Lanka’s coffin in this opening game.
Ben Shikongo dismantles Sri Lanka with two wickets in two deliveries
Right arm medium fast bowler, Ben Shikongo was the damage dealer in Namibia’s bowling line-up. Shikongo with his double wicket over off consecutive deliveries, ensured that the Lankan lions were derailed off the rail track. Shikongo dismissed Sri Lankan opener Pathum Nissanka off the very first delivery of his spell where Nissanka played a nothing short of a loose delivery straight to mid-on.
The very next delivery Shikongo bowled a good length delivery where Danushka Gunathalika poked his bat at a ball that moved away from the body, in the process edging it to the wicketkeeper. The back-to-back wickets pocketed by Shikongo ensured that Sri Lanka couldn’t event grab their hands on the red ropes to pull back the train to get them back on track.
Bernard Scholtz flattens Sri Lanka with two wickets giving just 18 runs in his 4 overs
Left arm orthodox bowler, Bernard Scholtz bowled an economical spell of 2-18 in his four overs. The second over of his spell changed the game in Namibia’s favour. Scholtz dismissed the game-changer of Sri Lanka, dismissing Bhanuka Rajapaksa who was looking to go big in the final overs of the run chase.
Scholtz then came back again in the 13th over to dismiss all-rounder Hasaranga and by that time Sri Lanka were already down and out in the run chase. Scholtz along with the rest of the Namibia bowlers gave the perfect fighting spirit defending 163 runs when no one had any idea of an upset in the first match of T20 World Cup 2022.
ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022 Points Table
Whats to come
UAE takes on Netherland for the second match of the T20 World Cup qualifiers on the Geelong Stadium at 19.00 Local time.