ICC Media Release
Scotland got its ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier campaign back on track at LC de Villiers Oval, Pretoria, today with an impressive victory over Namibia.
For the second day running Neil McCallum was Scotland's top scorer, registering another ton to go with the one he hit yesterday against Ireland. But unlike yesterday, he wore a broad smile after the game as the navy blues came out on top. His 103 was the backbone of his side's innings and it must put him in early contention for the player of the tournament award.
In a way, Namibia was unlucky that it came up against a Scotland side hurting from yesterday's defeat and in need of immediate redemption.
'I am delighted with my own form but more importantly today we got the win we wanted,' said man of the match McCallum afterwards.
'I think we bowled a lot better today. Against Ireland we bowled far too much on both sides of the wicket but today was much more disciplined and thankfully we were able to defend our total. Our team talk last night was really just a good old fashioned kick up the behind and I think it worked.
'It's a great relief and now we have a rest day before turning our attention to Uganda which is going to be another tough match for us,' he said.
Namibia started the game very well, restricting Scotland to 156-4 after 40 overs. But, led by McCallum, Scotland scored 111 off the last 10 overs to post a competitive total of 267-6.
In reply Namibia never really looked like getting there as the Scotland bowling attack strangled the reply with tight, efficient lines backed up by terrier-like fielding and safe hands.
Gerrie Snyman threatened to lead a rear-guard action towards the end but wickets fell around him and he was left stranded on 94 as Namibia was eventually all out 74 runs short.
Meanwhile, Afghanistan kept its astonishing run of form going with victory over Bermuda at Potchefstroom. Karim Sadiq scored 83 and Norooz Mangal 71 as the team, which was in Division 5 of the ICC World Cricket League a year ago, proved too good for Division 1 side Bermuda on this occasion.
Irving Romaine's team was unable to reach the 240 required for victory, falling short by 60 runs, giving Afghanistan two wins from two matches at this level.
'We are very happy to get our second win,' said Afghanistan coach Kabir Khan.
'In our previous tournaments we have sometimes collapsed and recovered from it – it is just part of our game sometimes. The way we started was really good and then we fell behind but then we recovered. The thing we do well now is coming back into matches, while in the past we couldn't recover as well. That is very important for us.
'It is a very good thing that our players are sharing the responsibilities now. I am worried as a coach if you rely on one or two players, as if they don't perform then you think you have lost the game, but if everybody is chipping in then that it is very important.
'There are no main players in the team anymore – in the past we relied on one or two players but not any more. Everybody is given their role and everybody is performing.
'I am very happy to beat Bermuda, but I think we are good enough to beat higher-ranked teams and I want to have a chance to prove it,' said Kabir suggesting now that his sights are set on qualification for the Super Eight stage and then the sky's the limit.
Elsewhere, Oman gave Ireland a scare at Stan Friedman Oval, Krugersdorp when its opening batsmen got off to a flyer chasing 286 to win. Zeeshan Siddiqui and Nileshkumar Parmar put on a rapid 98 for the first wicket to make the Irish sweat but left-arm orthodox bowler Regan West then came on to save the day, taking 5-26 making sure of Ireland's 100 per cent record after two rounds.
Alex Kervezee was the hero for the Netherlands as the 19-year-old scored 121 not out, making a mockery of Denmark's impressive total of 245-9. Michael Pedersen had scored 121 runs of his own earlier for the Danes but then had to watch as their European neighbour knocked off the target, losing just three wickets along the way.
The first game of the day to finish was Kenya's rather facile victory over the UAE. Lameck Ngoche took 6-14 as the Colin Wells-coached side collapsed to 79 all out having done so well to beat Bermuda yesterday. Morris Ouma (50) wasted no time in knocking the runs off for Kenya as the 2003 ICC Cricket World Cup semi-finalist won with nine wickets and 37.4 overs to spare.
In the other game of the day Canada was too strong for Uganda with a Geoff Barnett century sealing a solid run-chase for the North Americans.