NAMIBIA’s top junior cricketers took centre stage at the National Cricket Week and they did not disappoint, delivering some excellent performances over the past few days.
More than 200 boys competed in four age groups, representing four regional teams, with the u11, u16 and u19 competitions taking place in Windhoek, while the u13 competition took place in Walvis Bay.
After completion of the group stages, the Central and South East regions had fared the best, with Central topping the u19 and u13 categories, while South East were on top of the u16 and u11 categories.
There were some brilliant batting displays with Tiaan van der Merwe of the u11 South East team and Adam Diggle of the u13 Central team hitting double centuries.
On Monday, Van der Merwe scored 215 as he led South East to a crushing 316-run victory against the Northern Region in the u11 category.
Van der Merwe dominated the batting, scoring 215 off only 160 balls, which included six sixes and 20 fours, as South East amassed 365 runs before dismissing North for a mere 49 runs, with Enre van Zyl taking three wickets for seven runs and Brink Walters 3/3.
South East remained unbeaten during the group stages after also notching up a 73-run victory against the Coastal Region and beating Central by 121 runs.
Against the Coast, Enre van Zyl was their top batsman, scoring 73 off 87 balls (6×4) in a total of 193, while Louis Burger took 4/12 as the Coast were dismissed for 120.
Against Central, Tiaan van der Merwe once again starred with the bat, scoring 78 off 82 balls (6×4) in South East’s total of 223.
Central were then dismissed for 102, with Louis Burger taking 3/12, to complete a comfortable victory.
In another u11 match, Sebastian Badenhorst of the North starred with both bat and ball, although he could not prevent Central from winning the match by 118 runs.
In a great bowling display, he took eight wickets for 36 runs off 8,5 overs, as Central reached 205, and although he also starred with the bat, scoring 34 not out, he received little support as the whole side was dismissed for 87 runs.
Central topped the log in the u13 category, with Adam Diggle in supreme form.
On Wednesday he led Central to a crushing 436-run victory against North after a great innings of 235 not out off only 98 balls. Luca Micillo added 93 off 78 balls in Central’s total of 491, before North were skittled out for 55, with Christiaan van der Westhuizen taking three wickets for eight runs.
Central also beat South East by five wickets on Tuesday, after dismissing South East for 228 and then reaching the target with five wickets in hand.
South East’s top batsmen were Janco Jacobs (60), Henre Opperman (54) and Nico Pieters (50), while Adriaan Coetzee scored 71 off 91 balls for Central.
In the u16 category, South East topped the log after winning all three their group matches. They beat Central by four wickets after dismissing Central for 133 and then reaching 135/6.
JW Visagie was their top batsman, scoring 44 off 50 balls, while Michael Feely was their top bowler, taking 3/11.
On Monday, South East beat the North by 105 runs, after scoring 177 and then dismissing the North for 72. Visagie was once again their top batsman, scoring 35 off 38 balls, although Tjinonongo Kamburona gave a fine bowling display in a losing cause for the North, taking 5/10 off 3,5 overs.
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On Wednesday, South East beat Coastal by 57 runs, with Michael Feely scoring 34 and Daneel van der Walt 32 in their total of 189, while Armand Smith took four wickets for two runs as Coastal were restricted to 132.
Central remained unbeaten in the u19 category with three comfortable victories.
They beat the Coast by 10 wickets, after dismissing the Coast for 125, and then reaching 126 without loss, with Ryan Moffet scoring 645 not out and Andre Siepker 47.
On Tuesday they beat South East by 59 runs, with JC Balt scoring 70 in their total of 220, while South East were dismissed for 161 with Gerhard Janse van Rensburg scoring 54.
On Wednesday they beat the North by 185 runs, with Alex Volschenk scoring 111 off 89 balls (2×6, 11×4) in their total of 277, while the North were dismissed for 92.