Namibia stun Sri Lanka as T20 WC kicks off with an upset

GEELONG: Namibian bowlers displayed a combined effort to bundle out Sri Lanka on 108 as they stunned the former champions to mark ICC Men’s T20 World Cup start with an upset.

Set to chase 164, Sri Lanka bundled out for a paltry 108 with only three of their batters amassing the double figures.

The Asian champions had a deplorable start to their run chase as they lost four wickets for a mere 40 runs in the seventh over.

Sri Lankan captain Dasun Shanaka and Bhanuka Rajapaksa put on a brief fightback as they added 34 runs for the fifth wicket before the latter perished in the 11th over.

The left-handed could score 20 off 21 deliveries including two boundaries.

Sri Lankan then ran into yet another collapse and began to lose wickets at an alarming rate and soon skittled out for a mere 108.

Shanaka remained the top-scorer for the side as he scored a gritty 29 off 23 balls.

Ben Shikongo, Bernard Scholtz and David Wiese bagged two wickets each for Namibia, while JJ Smit struck out a batter.

Batting first on the invitation of Sri Lankan captain Shanaka, Namibia managed to amass a decent 163/7 in their quota of 20 overs, thanks to brilliant cameos of Frylinck and Smit later in their innings.

Namibia had an unwanted start to their first innings as they lost three wickets for a paltry 35 inside five overs.

Stephan Baard and skipper Gerhard Erasmus then attempted to anchor the innings as they added 41 runs for the fourth wicket.

The pair stopped the flow of the wickets but remained a touch too slow as Namibia could get to 68/3 in 11 overs.

Skipper Erasmus then looked to speed up the proceedings but ended up falling to Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva in the 12th over. He could score 20 off 24 deliveries.

The side then lost two more wickets as Baard (20) and David Wiese (0) fell in consecutive overs, consequently causing Namibia to slip to 93/6 in the 15th over.

Following the slump, Frylinck and Smit stood up for their team and scripted an astonishing recovery as they added 70 runs at a rapid pace to bolster the total to 163/7 before the former fell on the last delivery of the innings.

Frylinck top-scored for the side with a quickfire knock of 44 off 28, laced with four boundaries, while Smit remained unbeaten on 31 off 16 with the help of two boundaries and as many sixes.

Madushan Liyanagamage led the bowling attack for Sri Lanka with 2/37, while de Silva, Maheesh Theekshana, Dushmantha Chameera and Chamika Karunaratne made one scalp each.