There is a definite favorite in the clash between Namibia and the UAE on Thursday, October 20, in Geelong, but the 2022 T20 World Cup has reeked of unpredictability so far.
Despite their loss to the Netherlands in their previous game, Namibia are in a good position to make the Super 12 stage. They’re up against favorable opposition in the UAE, who have lost both their matches so far. The Eagles will also know exactly what they need to do against the UAE, with the Netherlands-Sri Lanka clash scheduled to take place earlier in the day.
The UAE, on the other hand, need something miraculous to progress past the first round. They’re an entertaining side with several talented players in their ranks but are arguably too raw to make an impact against a Namibian side who have gone from strength to strength under Gerhard Erasmus’ leadership.
Can Namibia continue their good international form and seal a Super 12 spot? Or will the UAE play spoilsport and either halt Namibia’s charge or themselves seriously challenge the other teams in the group?
Junaid Siddique and Co. will be licking their lips at the prospect of bowling to the Namibian top order. Michael van Lingen and Divan la Cock haven’t quite hit their stride yet, with most of the Eagles’ top batters arguably batting too low in the order. Stephan Baard isn’t the most explosive batter either, leaving the powerplay often underutilized.
Captain Erasmus should probably be batting in the top four, while the likes of David Wiese and JJ Smit will be able to make a bigger impact if they get more balls to face. All-rounder Jan Frylinck has been Namibia’s best player in the T20 World Cup thus far and they will look to him once again against the UAE.
Muhammad Waseem is the UAE’s most important batter, and if Namibia can make early inroads, the rest of the batting lineup could come apart like it did against Sri Lanka. Aayan Khan and Karthik Meiyappan have formed a fearsome spin partnership, but other departments have left a lot to be desired.
While the UAE will want to show the world what they’re capable of, it’s tough to imagine them upsetting a Namibia side that shocked Sri Lanka and then fought tooth and nail against the Netherlands. Erasmus and Co. know what it takes to succeed under pressure and have more top-level experience than CP Rizwan’s men, and should be able to end up on the winning side on Thursday.
Namibia will have their work cut out to improve their net run rate and clinch a Super 12 spot in the 2022 T20 World Cup, but two points shouldn’t be too hard to achieve against the UAE.
Prediction: Namibia to win Match 10 of the 2022 T20 World Cup
Poll : Who will win Match 10 of the 2022 T20 World Cup?
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