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T20 World Cup: New Zealand one win away from semi-finals after beating Namibia in Sharjah

New Zealand will reach T20 World Cup semi-finals if they beat Afghanistan on Sunday, live on Sky Sports Cricket from 9.30am; Black Caps smash 67 runs from final four overs against Namibia to post 163-4, before limiting qualifiers to 111-7; Tim Southee and Trent Boult share four wickets

Last Updated: 05/11/21 1:47pm

Glenn Phillips smashed an unbeaten 39 from 21 balls during a rollicking end to the New Zealand innings

​​​New Zealand are one win away from reaching the T20 World Cup semi-finals following a 52-run victory over a valiant but now-eliminated Namibia in Sharjah.

The Black Caps rallied from 96-4 after 16 overs to post 163-4 as Glenn Phillips (39no off 21 balls) and Jimmy Neesham (35no off 23) smoked 67 from the final four overs, before Namibia were limited to 111-7 with seamers Tim Southee (2-15) and Trent Boult (2-20) sharing four wickets.

New Zealand will be assured of a spot in the last four, alongside already-qualified table toppers Pakistan, if they beat Afghanistan in their final Group 2 game in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

A fourth New Zealand win of the tournament would end Afghanistan’s hopes of progressing and also make it impossible for India to top them, with Virat Kohli’s men only able to earn three victories at most.

However, a New Zealand defeat to Afghanistan would see them knocked out of the competition, with Afghanistan’s net run-rate superior to that of the Black Caps, and leave India still able to claim a semi-final spot with crunching wins over Scotland and Namibia.

New Zealand vs Afghanistan

November 7, 2021, 9:30am

Live on

India vs Namibia

November 8, 2021, 1:30pm

Live on

New Zealand had been kept in check by Namibia on Friday afternoon – until Phillips and Neesham tonked seven boundaries combined in an overall stand of an unbroken 76 from 36 deliveries at the death.

David Wiese’s 18th over was taken for 21, while JJ Smit’s 10-ball 20th over, which included four wides, went for 18 as Namibia’s bowlers, including Ruben Trumpelmann, were punished when erring too full or too short.

Namibia had been excellent with the ball for most of the first 16 overs, picking up the wickets of Martin Guptill (18) – who had biffed a 56-ball 93 against Scotland on Wednesday – Daryl Mitchell (19), Kane Williamson (28 off 25) and Devon Conway (17).

Captain Gerhard Erasmus (1-22 from four overs) bowled opposite number Williamson on the sweep, while he then ran out Conway from midwicket as the batter tried to complete a risky second run.

Namibia reached 47-0 in the eighth over of the chase through Michael van Lingen (25 and Stephan Baard (21), only to lose 3-8 once Neesham bowled Van Lingen to claim his 150th T20 wicket – Baard and Erasmus (3) fell to the spin of Mitchell Santner (1-20) and Ish Sodhi (1-22) respectively.

Stephan Baard helped Namibia to 47-0 in the eight over of the run chase in Sharjah

Stephan Baard helped Namibia to 47-0 in the eight over of the run chase in Sharjah

Wiese (16 off 17) and Zane Green (23 off 27) unfurled some lusty blows but both were dismissed by the impressive Southee before Boult took two lower-order wickets as New Zealand’s total proved beyond the qualifiers, who close their debut T20 World Cup campaign against India on Monday.

There was a moment of real concern for New Zealand when Sodhi was struck on the forehead as he tried to catch Wiese on seven but the leg-spinner continued his over after being checked over by medical personnel, before leaving the field later in the innings.

WHICH PLAYERS STARRED?

Glenn Phillips and Jimmy Neesham – New Zealand needed impetus and this pair provided it, starting when Phillips launched an Erasmus full toss for six over midwicket in the 17th over. Wiese and Trumpelmann were then carted for a combined five boundaries, while Neesham also clubbed a six in Smit’s wide-infested 20th over as New Zealand’s innings ended in style.

Tim Southee – a good all-round display from New Zealand with the ball but Southee was the pick, pinning Wiese lbw as well as having Green caught in the deep and going at under four runs an over. Southee’s long-time bowling partner Boult was impressive, too, as was slow-left armer Santner, who has proved extremely difficult to get away in this tournament.

Bernard Scholtz – Namibia’s left-arm spinner bowled his three overs in the first 10 and shipped only one boundary, a six from Guptill. Scholtz, who was backed up by fellow spinner Erasmus, did not return for a fourth over, while seamer Karl Birkenstock, whose two overs featured nine runs and just two boundaries, did not complete his allocation either – something Erasmus perhaps regrets after New Zealand scored freely at the death.

WHAT’S NEXT?

Australia vs W Indies

November 6, 2021, 9:30am

Live on

England vs S Africa

November 6, 2021, 1:30pm

Live on

Group 1 comes to a conclusion on Saturday, a day on which two of England (eight points), Australia (six points) and South Africa (six points) will secure places in next week’s semi-finals.

England are all but qualified having won four from four and it will take the heaviest of defeats against South Africa for Eoin Morgan’s side to slip out of the top two, such is the strength of their net run-rate. If Australia lose to West Indies earlier in the day, England will qualify regardless.

Victory for Australia over West Indies (9.30am, Sky Sports Cricket) would mean South Africa would need to beat England (1.30pm, Sky Sports Cricket) and lift their net run-rate above Australia’s to make the top two.

If Australia are beaten and South Africa win, the Proteas will go through, while if both teams lose it it will come down to net run-rate, with Australia’s superior at this stage. I hope you have got all that!

The T20 World Cup continues live on Sky Sports Cricket from 9.30am on Saturday. Watch Australia vs West Indies in Abu Dhabi followed by England vs South Africa in Sharjah.




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