A GREAT unbeaten century by Craig Williams enabled Namibia to reach a respectable 227 runs for seven wickets shortly after tea on the first day of their Cricket South Africa Challenge match against Gauteng yesterday.
Williams reached his century off only 115 balls, which included 15 fours and one six, to rescue NamibiaÂ’s innings in their three-day match at the Old Edwardians Cricket Club in Johannesburg.
Gauteng won the toss and sent Namibia in to bat and the visitors were soon in trouble, as Ian Opperman was dismissed for six with the total on 14.
Christie Viljoen and Ian Opperman shared a second wicket partnership of 47 runs before Ya France was out for 18, and when Viljoen (33) and Raymond van Schoor (0) were out in quick succession, Namibia was struggling at 72 for four wickets.
Williams however led Namibia’s recovery as he kept the scoreboard ticking along, hitting some powerful boundaries, while he received good support from Gerhard Erasmus. The two shared a fifth-wicket partnership of 74 runs before Erasmus was out for 18. Williams also had a bit of good fortune as he was dropped on 42 by Gauteng bowler Richard das Neves who could not hold onto a powerful shot by Williams.
Nicolaas Scholtz added 66 runs with Williams for the sixth wicket before he was dismissed for 24, with the total on 212. After tea, Namibia lost the wickets of Bernard Scholtz (0) and Brandon Viret (14), as they reached 245 runs for the loss of eight wickets off 78 overs, with Wlliams still not out on 112 runs. Matt McGillivray was GautengÂ’s most successful bowler, taking three wickets for 31 runs off 14 overs. With two daysÂ’ play remaining the match is still evenly balanced, although Namibia will be hoping that Williams can steer them close to the 300-mark.