Welcome to Wisden’s live match centre for the T20 World Cup 2021 game between New Zealand and Namibia on November 5 – follow live updates, commentary, score and where to watch details (TV and live streaming) here.
The Kiwis have won two of their three games thus far, while Namibia have one win and two defeats.
Right. That will be that from us for this game. Don’t go away though as Virat Kohli’s men prepare to clash with Scotland at Dubai. Head over to our coverage to see if Kohli can finally win a toss and if India can continue their recently-found form. Till then, this is me signing off. Goodbye, stay safe!
Before the match began, New Zealand’s brief was pretty clear. They needed to win, with the margin of victory not being as much of an issue. However, they’ve not just achieved victory, they’ve done so at a canter, meaning that their NRR has also gotten a boost. They began their batting innings with lots of intent. Martin Guptill, in particular, was aggressive in the Power Play. Post that, there was a bit of a lull. Well, at least until Neesham and Phillips took matters into their own hands.
Thereafter, the Kiwis never let up on their intensity. They planned brilliantly and executed those tactics efficiently too. Their spinners were again magnificent in the middle overs and barely allowed the Namibian batters to get out of second gear. Neesham was also tidy, whereas the pacers did their bit at the start and at the death. All in all, it was as close to a perfect day at the office for the Kiwis as they would have hoped for.
From Namibia’s perspective, they would be gutted that they let in so many runs at the back end of their bowling essay. In essence, that proved to be the difference between a par total and a target that was well beyond their reach. Their batting seems heavily reliant on a couple of individuals. But with them not playing a lot of ICC cricket lately, you could perhaps pardon them for it. And, the negative result was certainly not due to a lack of effort!
Over 20: Namibia 111-7 – New Zealand ease to victory
Milne bowls a tidy last over and that seals a rather comfortable victory for New Zealand. They move up above Afghanistan, having garnered 6 points from their 4 games. And, more importantly, with their fate still in their own hands.
Over 18.5: Namibia 105-7 – Namibia folding like a pack of cards now
Namibia look pretty jaded now and seem to be offering up wickets for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Boult alone has two in the 19th over and Namibia’s run-chase is ending like a damp squib. The Kiwis might not mind the positive effect this will have on their NRR though!
Over 17.5: Namibia 102-5 – Namibia on the brink
Green got a couple of boundaries away but largely endured a struggle at the crease. With him being dismissed, Namibia are well on the brink of another defeat. New Zealand would now want to ensure that they win by as big a margin as possible, if NRR were to come into play.
Over 16: Namibia 92-4 – Game slipping away from Namibia
New Zealand have done well to follow up their wickets with relatively tidy overs. Namibia may only be four runs behind than what the Kiwis were at this stage. But they have tp produce a stunning assault to reduce that deficit. This might just be a bridge too far for them.
Over 14.3: Namibia 86-4 – Southee traps Wiese in front
Southee has been one of New Zealand’s go-to bowlers over the years and he comes up trumps again. He gets a ball to nip back off the surface and raps Wiese plumb in front of middle and leg stump. Wiese does not even bother with the review. Is this the decisive moment?
Over 14: Namibia 85-3 – Green and Wiese break free
Just when you thought Namibia’s innings was going to end in a whimper, they bring out the big shots and pull back the run-chase. They still need more than 13 runs per over in the six overs that remain but they at least have a bit of hope now.
Over 12: Namibia 68-3 – Kiwis all over Namibia
The Namibian batters have found it tough to rotate strike in the middle overs and the Kiwis are all over Namibia now. Santner and Sodhi have tied Green and Wiese in knots. And, it would take something special for Namibia to break out of this pattern.
Update: Ish Sodhi has been struck on the head by a David Wiese shot. The ball might have deflected off his arm into his head and it seems quite painful. Sodhi is receiving treatment, as we speak. He will continue bowling for now.
Update: A puff of dust emerged after a Santner delivery in the 11th over. So much so that the ball spun past the bat, the keeper and short third man for four. These are worrying signs for Namibia, considering that there are several overs of spin left.
Over 9.2: Namibia 55-3 – Sodhi gets in on the fun
Sodhi and Santner have been sensational for New Zealand at this T20 World Cup and both have continued their stellar form so far. Balls bowled into the track are either sticking or skidding through. Now, with Erasmus back in the shed too, Namibia’s task seems very arduous.
Over 8.1: Namibia 51-2 – Back to back wickets for the Kiwis
Baard follows van Lingen to the pavilion now. New Zealand are turning the screw and with Santner having gained confidence after this dismissal, he could be a very difficult proposition to tackle for Namibia.
Update: Captain Gerhard Erasmus walks out to join Baard. Seems like the captain has rolled up his sleeves and wants a piece of the action!
Over 7.2: Namibia 47-1 – Neesham knocks over van Lingen
Batters have found it tough to score runs when pacers have bowled back of a length. Neesham, who was quite successful with that ploy for the Mumbai Indians, repeats the dose to breeze past van Lingen’s bat. New Zealand needed this wicket and they would be hopeful of applying the brakes henceforth.
Over 6: Namibia 36-0 – van Lingen breaks the shackles
A six and a four means that van Lingen has broken the shackles a touch. However, if Namibia are to mount a proper run-chase, they need many more overs of a similar ilk. The required run rate has already jumped over 9 and if Namibia aren’t careful, it can keep climbing.
Over 5: Namibia 24-0 Namibia going nowhere
Despite a sumptuous boundary in the fifth over, Namibia are well behind the run rate. Remember, both of New Zealand’s spinners have bowled beautifully in the tournament. Namibia need to make the most of the final Power Play over. Otherwise, they could drift further away.
Over 3: Namibia 15-0 – Kiwis build pressure
Apart from a couple of eye-catching strokes, Namibia haven’t had a lot going in their favour. Each of the Kiwis’ quicks have adapted well to the surface and have hit their straps instantly. Namibia might look to release the pressure. Something could give in the next over or two.
Over 1: Namibia 6-0 – Streaky start for Namibia
Southee has already gotten the ball to move in the air – something the Namibian seamers didn’t manage. He even induced an outside edge but with New Zealand having disposed off the slip (just a ball before, mind you), he was left empty-handed. Southee looked in good rhythm though.
Update: Baard and Van Lingen will open the batting for Namibia. Tim Southee to start off proceedings from the City End!
New Zealand began their innings in effervescent fashion, with Martin Guptill looking to continue from where he left off against Scotland. However, once he was dismissed and once the Power Play was done, the Kiwis struggled to generate any sort of momentum. Namibia’s spinners applied the brakes brilliantly and were perhaps the team in the ascendancy before the death overs. Unfortunately for them, the wheels started coming off towards the end, meaning that Neesham and Phillips made merry. The left-right combination also allowed both batters to target the respective short boundaries.
At the half-way stage, New Zealand are well ahead. They have runs on the board and they have the bowling attack to exploit the sluggish conditions on offer. Namibia have their task cut out and unless they can pull out something special, they might find themselves playing catch-up for a large chunk of the second innings. Do join us in a bit for the run-chase!
Over 20: New Zealand 163-4 Neesham and Phillips power NZ to 163
That was quite a long over – it had four wides in it (no less). Neesham targeted the shorter leg side boundary to perfection and got 18 runs away in the final over. New Zealand seem to have registered an above-par total and things could get a lot trickier for Namibia post the break
Over 19: New Zealand 145-4 – Another good over for NZ
14 runs come off the 19th over and it has set the Black Caps up for a grandstand finish. The way things are going, they might even back themselves to get to 160. From Namibia’s perspective, things have started unraveling rather quickly – quicker than what they would’ve liked.
Over 18: New Zealand 131-4 – Namibia under the pump
Right. New Zealand have turned things around in a trice. Namibia are feeling the pinch and even a total in excess of 150 seems possible now. The Kiwi finishers had plenty to prove before today’s game. So far, they’ve done pretty well to silence those critics.
Over 17: New Zealand 110-4 – Finally a bit of momentum for NZ
Erasmus has been Namibia’s best bowler today but he finally takes a bit of tap. The Kiwis played him well too, waiting on the back foot and working the gaps. And, when the opportunity presented itself, Phillips walloped a maximum over cow corner. 30 runs from here and NZ will have a fairly decent total on the board.
Over 16: New Zealand 96-4 – Kiwis struggling
The Kiwis haven’t been able to come to grips with the pitch so far. Neesham and Phillips have also looked scratchy and it will be intriguing to see if (or when) they can turn things around. Only four overs remain and even a score in excess of 130 seems tough at the moment.
Over 14: New Zealand 87-4 – Conway departs too
Just what New Zealand did not want at this stage. A run-out is the worst possible outcome, especially for a side struggling for runs. New Zealand now have to come out of this rut and need to inject momentum into their innings.
Over 12.1: New Zealand 81-3 – Erasmus castles Williamson
Erasmus gets the better of his opposite number and that might tilt the scales again. Remember, Phillips (the new man in) and Neesham haven’t been in great touch lately. The same could be said about Conway too, meaning that the Black Caps aren’t out of the woods yet.
Over 11: New Zealand 77-2 – Williamson the aggressor
For all intents and purposes, it seemed that Conway would be the aggressor. However, it seems that Williamson wants to get in on the act too. A pair of boundaries means that the Kiwis are up and running again. They would hope they can sustain their momentum a little longer though.
Update: New Zealand are 62-2 at the half-way mark. Conway might look to take the attack to the opposition with Williamson looking to bat through the innings. Loftie-Eaton to continue for now!
Over 9: New Zealand 59-2 – Conway and Williamson consolidate
The openers’ dismissals have certainly made the Kiwis more cautious. They seem intent on building a platform and considering how the pitch has played so far, it could be the right approach too. A very sluggish surface where anything above 140 will be very competitive.
Over 6.2: New Zealand 43-2 – Mitchell perishes in his attacking endeavour
Just as we were talking about Mitchell seeming inclined to take risks, he perishes while doing so. Another sign that the ball might not be coming on to the bat and that the spinners could be crucial in the middle overs.
Over 6: New Zealand 43-1 – Decent Power Play for the Kiwis
As Jos Buttler showed the other day, batting can get easier as the innings progresses. The Kiwis have not been too extravagant so far but have done enough to stay slightly ahead of Namibia. Mitchell might look to continue attacking, even post the Power Play.
Over 4.1: New Zealand 30-1 – Wiese sends Guptill back
Guptill was looking dangerous but he now has to watch the rest of the innings from the dressing room. The ball is holding in the pitch a touch and it would be interesting to see how the Kiwis’ middle order fares today.
Over 3: New Zealand 21-0 – Kiwis keep things ticking
Apart from a boundary in the second over, the Kiwis did not attempt too many big strokes. However, they seem to have assessed the surface and are moving things along nicely. Namibia need to break this partnership to put a lid on the run-scoring.
Over 1: New Zealand 9-0 – Guptill stamps his authority early
Guptill, who is fresh off a sparkling innings, begins on a similar note today as well. He seems to have lined up the Power Play and even an inferior match-up against left arm spin (SR of around 119) couldn’t prevent him from landing the first blow.
Daryl Mitchell and Martin Guptill will open the batting for the Kiwis. Bernard Scholtz will shoulder the new-ball responsibilities for now!
Update: The Namibian national anthem is followed by New Zealand’s national anthem. The ground is sparsely populated but you can hear the voices of both sets of fans. We are just moments away from the start!
Namibia win the toss and bowl first; New Zealand unchanged
Erasmus has stuck to the trend of bowling first. This is an afternoon game, remember. So the toss might not be as big a factor as it usually is, especially with dew not expected to arrive so early. New Zealand might also relish the chance to put up a huge total on the board and then defend it.
New Zealand XI: Martin Guptill, Daryl Mitchell, Kane Williamson (C), Devon Conway, Glenn Phillips, James Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Adam Milne, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult
Namibia XI: Stephan Baard, Michael van Lingen, Chris Williams, Zane Green, Gerhard Erasmus (C), JJ Smit, David Wiese, Jan Nicol Loftie-Eaton, Karl Birkenstock, Ruben Trumpelmann, Bernard Scholtz
What to expect at Sharjah?
The Sharjah track at the start of the T20 World Cup was quite sluggish. As the games have progressed, though, run-scoring has become a little easier. Jos Buttler illustrated that to the tee against Sri Lanka. That game also saw England defend a total, meaning that two of the past three matches at Sharjah have been won by the team batting first. Will these bits of evidence tempt the captain winning the toss to bat first? Or will they rely on what has served most teams well?
Can Namibia do India a favour?
Namibia have enjoyed quite a fairy tale to find themselves in the Super 12 stage and constantly competing against the likes of India, New Zealand and Pakistan. Today, though, the Indian faithful would want a slight favour from Namibia. All they want from Namibia is a victory over New Zealand, which could potentially clear India’s path to reach the semi-finals.
If that is to happen, David Wiese will play a crucial part – as will skipper Gerhard Erasmus. JJ Smit was uncharacteristically expensive against Pakistan but if he can hit his straps early, the Kiwis might have a problem. Ruben Trumpelmann is another bowler the Black Caps would be wary of, considering the damage he can inflict in the Power Play.
New Zealand hope to inch closer to the semi-finals
For New Zealand, the brief is pretty clear. If they win their remaining games, they will be through to the last four. Things, though, won’t be as straightforward on the pitch, especially with Namibia developing a penchant to punch above their weight. Against Scotland, Martin Guptill was at his belligerent best. If that happens today, Namibia might not stand a chance anyway. Yet, if he fails to fire, the Kiwis’ middle order could be put under the cosh. Kane Williamson has struggled for runs so far while there remain question marks over Glenn Phillips and James Neesham’s ability to finish an innings.
On the bowling front, Tim Southee and Trent Boult have a tendency to leak runs towards the end. Adam Milne has picked wickets but has conceded a lot of runs in the process. The good part, however, is that Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner are in excellent former. And, considering how Namibia fared against Afghanistan, the spin twins might have a massive role to play today as well.
T20 World Cup 2021 New Zealand v Namibia: Preview
Martin Guptill smashed 93 off 56 in New Zealand’s last game against Scotland to take the team to the second win of the competition. Mitchell Santner was the star with the ball, and will once again have an important role to play. Namibia, on the other hand, have been led by David Wiese’s efforts, but they would hope the other players can raise their game as well. A win for New Zealand will strengthen their chances of qualifying for the semis, while Namibia have a slight, but tough, chance.
T20 World Cup 2021 NZ v NAM: Team news and injury updates
New Zealand could replace Adam Milne, who went for 36 against Scotland, with Kyle Jamieson. Ish Sodhi, who gave away 42 runs, though, could continue as the pitch conditions at Sharjah will aid his bowling.
T20 World Cup 2021 New Zealand: Full team list for NZ
Namibia have seen skipper Gerhard Erasmus soldier on despite a broken finger. The player could continue in the XI in a crucial match for the side.
T20 World Cup 2021 Namibia: Full team list for NAM
T20 World Cup 2021 New Zealand v Namibia: Where to watch live
India: Star Sports Network; Disney+ Hotstar
UK & Ireland: Sky Sports Cricket, Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Mix; Sky Sports app, www.skysports.com
New Zealand: Sky Sports 3, Skysportnow.co.nz, skygo.co.nz
Middle East and North Africa: CricLife Max
The complete list of broadcast (TV and live streaming) options for the tournament can be found here.