NAMIBIA's national women's cricket side will compete against four other African nations at the Kwibuka Tournament in the Rwandan capital, Kigali next month.
Cricket Namibia (CN) on Monday said the tournament will take place from 6 to 10 June when Namibia will compete against Uganda, Botswana, Nigeria and the hosts, Rwanda at the Gahanga Stadium in Kigali. The five competing nations will all be in action again at the African Qualifiers in Botswana later this year.
The last tournament for the national women's team was in Scotland in 2019, and CN CEO Johan Muller says that he is happy that the women can start playing international cricket.
"We are glad that we can now have an international competition of our ladies. Our players and coach have worked hard for the past 10 months to improve the level and skills of our players. We are looking forward to seeing what the impact of that will be," he said.
"Our women's team is currently ranked 23rd in the world and one of our goals during this upcoming tournament is to move up on the rankings. Our vision is to be in the top 12 by April 2022, as well as the top three in Africa," he added.
The women's head coach Francois van der Merwe is excited to finally start playing cricket again and is looking forward to carrying the Eagles badge with pride on and off the field.
"We just want to go play an entertaining brand of cricket and execute all the hard work from the practice sessions and put into action at the Kwibuka Tournament."
Van der Merwe commended the team for a drastic improvement of the squad over the past eight months, saying that the ultimate 24 players have been playing regular inter-squad games.
"Our coach and players are extremely passionate and committed to making an impact on the world stage. We are looking forward to compete in the Uganda Tournament later this year and in the Commonwealth Qualifier in January 2022. What we are extremely positive about is the high number of talented u19 players we have in our development programs and who are making significant strides to improve their skills," CN said in a statement.
The Namibian squad:
Irené van Zyl (captain), Yasmeen Khan (vice captain), Kayleen Green, Didi Foerster, Sylvia Shihepo, Reehana Khan, Arrasta Diergaardt, Suné Wittmann, Victoria Hamunyela, Adri van der Merwe, Namusha Shiwomwenyo, Wilka Mwatile, Edelle van Zyl, Mezerly !Garases.
National head coach: Francois van der Merwe
Assistant coach: Gerhard Lotter
Team manager: Hestelle Haccou.