GEELONG: Netherlands prevailed over Namibia in another low-scoring thriller by nine wickets at the Simonds Stadium, Geelong to clinch their second straight victory in the ICC World Cup on Tuesday.
Chasing the target, Netherlands got off to a flier with opener Vikramjit Singh going hell for leather from the very beginning. The batter smashed two consecutive boundaries in the first over.
Singh put his foot on the pedal on the fourth over as he smashed Ben Shikongo for consecutive sixes. The team continued the onslaught and brought up the team's fifty on the last ball of the powerplay to finish at 51/0 at the end of the six overs.
Bernard Scholtz finally broke the first-wicket stand of 59 runs to give Namibia a much-needed breakthrough. Vikramjit Singh was dismissed for a well-made 39(31).
Max ODowd and Bas de Leede did not take any risk as the scoring rate saw a dip to take the Sutch team to 68/1 at the halfway mark. The Netherlands seemed to be cruising to victory with 32 needed off 42 balls, but there was a twist in the tale as the Namibia bowlers pulled things back by taking four quick wickets within a span of 10 runs.
With 14 needed off the last 12 deliveries, Scott Edwards and Tim Pringle saw the team across the line to win another low-scoring thriller.
Vikramjit Singh was the highest scorer for Netherlands with JJ Smit picking two wickets for Namibia.
Opting to bat first, Namibia could not repeat the heroics of their victory against Sri Lanka. The team got to an awful start, losing three wickets inside the powerplay. Openers Michael van Lingen and Divan la Cock were dismissed within the first five overs with Jan Nicol Loftie-
Eaton losing his wicket in the sixth over. Divan went for a duck with Tim Pringle drawing first blood while Lingen played some beautiful shots, but his inning was cut short by Colin Ackermann for 20 off 19 balls. Loftie-Eaton was caught off Paul van Meekeren and headed to the pavilion without troubling the scorers.
Namibia ended their powerplay at 33-3, failing to make use of the fielding restrictions. The Dutch were excellent with the ball and struck to their plans to refuse Namibia a solid opening stand.
Regular fall of wickets never saw Namibia score freely as the Dutch bowlers kept chipping with the wickets, using the wicket's two-paced nature. The Netherlands bowled brilliantly to dry off the boundaries in the middle overs forcing Namibia to settle for a below-par score.
Namibia got to the three-figure mark in the 18th over with Jan Frylinck and Gerhard Erasmus at the crease with powerful hitters like David Wiese and JJ Smit still in the hut. Namibia scraped to a total of 121/6 after managing just three boundaries in the last three overs. Jan Frylinck top-scored for Namibia scoring 43 off 48 balls.
Netherland bowler Bas de Leede carried his form from the last match and was the pick of the bowlers bagging two wickets for 18 runs. Bas De Leede was announced as the 'Player of the Match' for his contribution with the bat and the ball.
Brief Scores: Netherlands 122/5 (Vikramjit Singh 39, Max ODowd 35; JJ Smit 2/24) vs Namibia 121/6 (Jan Frylinck 43, Michael van Lingen 20; Bas de Leede 2/18).