ZC

Namibia Under-19s – 135 for 6 in 20 overs (Eben van Wyk 44*, Albert van der Merwe 16, Nicol Loftie-Eton 16; Jonathan Connolly 2/32, Kundai Tigere 2/34)

Zimbabwe Under-19s – 139 for 3 in 18.2 overs (Trent Jayden 59*, Liam Roche 39*, Gregory Dollar 20; Petrus Burger 1/10, Sean Fouche 1/28, Lohan Louwrens 1/28)

Zimbabwe Under-19s won by seven wickets

Trent Jayden’s unbeaten 59 powered Zimbabwe Under-19s to a seven-wicket win over Namibia Under-19s in the first of the two-match Twenty20 series between the two sides played at Windhoek’s United Ground today.

Zimbabwe won the toss and put in the hosts to bat first.

Albert van der Merwe and Lohan Louwrens opened Nambia’s batting with promise, putting on 33 together in just under three overs before Louwrens (11) was caught by Jayden off a Kundai Tigere delivery.

In the next over, Namibia were reduced to 35 for two when Jonathan Connolly bowled out van der Merwe. He made 16 off 10 balls and his knock included one six and two fours.

When the hosts appeared to be stabilising, Oldrieve Declan claimed the scalp of Nicol Eaton-Loftie, who laboured to 16 off 29 balls, to leave them on 63 for three in 10.2 overs.

Sean Fouche was the last Namibian wicket to fall with a double-digit figure, when he was dismissed by Manson Chikowero for 10.

The hosts had to thank Eben van Wyk – who top-scored for them with an unbeaten, run-a-ball 44 – for their innings total of 135 for six in 20 overs which would have been far less had Zimbabwe not conceded 21 extras.

Connolly and Tigere finished with two wickets apiece.

Jayden and Gregory Dollar got Zimbabwe’s chase off at a canter, enjoying a 50-run first-wicket partnership in five overs that came to an end when Louwrens trapped Dollar lbw for 20 – he faced 14 balls, four of which were boundaries.

The tourists’ innings suffered a little dent when they were reduced to 80 for three by the 11th over, with Milton Shumba (eight) and Kieran Robinson (four) being dismissed in the space of three overs.

Jayden and Liam Roche, however, took the Namibian bowlers to the cleaners to hand Zimbabwe Under-19s a seven-wicket win with 10 balls remaining.

The duo was brutal towards the end, with Roche carting them over the line four times on top of his single boundary to finish with 39 not out off 28 balls.

The impressive Jayden faced 49 balls for his unbeaten knock of 59 runs, which included two sixes and five fours.

The two sides will meet again at the same venue tomorrow for their second and last Twenty20 match of the tour which also includes five one-day matches.