Kimberley: Pakistan's fearsome pace duo of Wasim Akram and Shoaib Akhtar took nine wickets between them to rock Namibia for 84 and give their team a 171-run win in the World Cup on Sunday.
Wasim, 5-28 and Shoaib, 4-46, gave the Namibians a lesson in what to expect in the big league with a fiery display after Pakistan had scored 255-9 from 50 overs after electing to bat. Wasim, making a record 34th World Cup appearance, took his tally in cricket's showpiece to 50 and his overall haul to 498 One-day wickets. His destructive spell was also Pakistan's best ever at the World Cup, bettering the 5-35 by spinner Saqlain Mushtaq against Bangladesh four years ago.
"It will be fun after 20 years to see how many bowlers have claimed 50 wickets in the World Cup," the veteran left-arm seamer said. "If you play for 17-18 years and stay fit, you are bound to get records. The important thing is to enjoy the game which I am doing a lot." Namibian captain Deon Kotze conceded his team had never faced such hostile bowling before. "It is always difficult to face the likes of Shoaib and Wasim," he said. "We have never faced something like this before.
"I was hoping for a topsy turvy game, but Pakistan was simply outstanding." Namibia was in danger of falling for the lowest total in One-day Internationals when it slipped to 35-8, before Bjorn Kotze and Rudi van Vuuren added 42 for the last wicket. Kotze top scored with an unbeaten 24, while van Vuuren made 14 before he holed out in the deep off Saqlain Mushtaq. Namibia's 84 in 17.4 overs was the fourth lowest total in World Cup history, but far superior to Canada's record low of 45 against England during the 1979 edition.
Earlier opener Salim Elahi top-scored for Pakistan with 63 with pacer Gerrie Snyman taking 2-51 and effecting a run out. Pakistan found life tough as the Namibian bowlers kept a disciplined line and length while Elahi and Saeed Anwar scored 44 runs in the first 10 overs. Anwar, who missed the first game with an injured elbow, failed to keep a cut down and was smartly caught by Louis Burger off Bjorn Kotze for 23. Younis Khan and Elahi put 53 for the second wicket before Younis was caught behind after making 28 and he soon saw Inzamam-ul-Haq following him back to the pavilion, bowled by Deon Kotze for four.
Elahi, dropped when 38, made 63 before offering a straightforward catch to mid- wicket off Jan Burger to leave Pakistan 150 for four. Yousuf Youhana and Rashid Latif lifted Pakistan with a rapid fifth wicket stand of 58 off 54 balls before Youhana holed out at long off after making 43. Snyman then returned to remove Latif for 36 and Abdul Razzaq for four. Pakistan added 85 in its last 10 overs with Wasim chipping in with a 14-ball 20. Wasim was not alone in setting records, Namibia's Rudi van Vuuren becoming the first man to play in both the rugby union and cricket World Cups. Van Vuuren, who was not included in Namibia's first match against Zimbabwe, was part of the Namibian rugby team at the last World Cup in England four years ago.
| Copyright AFP 2001 |