JJ Smit stood unbeaten on 32 as Namibia beat Scotland by four wickets in their first-ever Super 12 match of the T20 World Cup on Wednesday.
Left-arm quick Ruben Trumpelmann returned figures of 3-17 in Abu Dhabi to help restrict Scotland to 109-8.
Smit and David Wiese, who made 16, put on a key partnership of 35 to guide the team home with five balls to spare, handing Scotland their second loss of the group stage.
Trumpelmann, the South African who played senior provincial cricket for Northerns, began the show with three wickets in the first over.
“I was nervous out there but I thought, it’s the World Cup, so why not enjoy it,” said the man of the match. “I use swing as a weapon up front, so luckily it went my way today. We hope to win a few more, but this is massive for us.”
Trumpelmann justified his team’s decision to bat first as he struck with the first ball and then got two in successive deliveries, including Richie Berrington for nought.
Berrington, who was standing in as captain with regular skipper Kyle Coetzer out nursing a finger injury, reviewed the call but replays suggested the ball would have hit the leg stump.
The opening over provided a superb start for a team, ranked a lowly 19, that stormed into the Super 12s after wins over Netherlands and Ireland in the qualifying stage.
“Credit to Namibia for bowling so well early on,” said a disappointed Berrington after seeing his team reduced to 18-4. “At that stage [after the collapse] we just needed a partnership. Matthew Cross played well but unfortunately we didn’t get it going for long.”
Trumpelmann returned his T20-best figures in his sixth international in the shortest format.
Former Proteas all-rounder David Wiese trapped Craig Wallace lbw for four to rattle Scotland, who lost their Super 12 opener to Afghanistan by 130 runs.
Opener and wicketkeeper-batter Matthew Cross attempted to stem the rot with Michael Leask but another left-arm fast medium, Jan Frylinck, bowled him for 19. Cross took 33 balls for the effort.
Leask played a lone hand with his 44 off 27 deliveries before being bowled by Smit.
The bowlers kept up the pressure in the final few overs with Frylinck returning figures of 2-10 from his four overs.
Chris Greaves made 25 and was run out on the final ball of the innings.
In reply, Craig Williams and Michael van Lingen got the team off to a solid start with an opening stand of 28 but Saafyan Sharif claimed the first breakthrough to check Namibia.
He dismissed Van Lingen for 18 and soon Greaves struck with his leg spin to see the back of wicketkeeper-batter Zane Green, for nine.
Spinners Leask and Mark Watt also chipped in with a wicket to make the chase challenging for the T20 World Cup debutants, but Smit stood firm at one end to extend his team’s dream.
When asked of his team’s chances of qualifying for the semis, a smiling Smit said: “If we qualify for the semi-finals of the World Cup, it will be a massive uproar in the cricket world. We know we can, we are in the Super 12. We are enjoying it.”
© Agence France-Presse