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Namibia off to great start at AST Bowls

Namibia got off to a great start at the African States Bowls Tournament in Windhoek yesterday, winning three of their opening four matches. 

The top bowlers from six Southern African nations have assembled in Windhoek for the biennial tournament which was last staged in 2019 due to the covid-interrupted years.

The men’s competition is being staged at the Trans Namib Bowling Club where Namibia won both their opening matches against Zambia. 

Namibia’s men’s pairs team of Graham Snyman and JP Fouche gave a great performance as they comfortably won their match 33-6 against the Zambian pairs team of Sandy Walker and Joseph Chishimba. 

In other men’s pair’s matches, the Zimbabwean team of Clive Robertson and Myles Hooper caused an upset by beating the South Africa team of Victor Siphali and John Molupi 17-12, while the Kenyan pair of Cephas Kimwaki and Douglas Nyabuto beat the Botswana pair of Baven Balendra and Edwin Nyoka 16-14 in a close encounter. 

Namibia also got off to a winning start in the men’s trips competition, as their team of Axel Krahenbuhl, Colin Peake and Kat Steenkamp beat the Zambian team of Roy Sichone, Peter Mususa and Wesley Tembo 22-15. 

South Africa and Zimbabwe were involved in a titanic battle before the South African team of Niksa Benguric, Charles Mathewson and Wayne Roberts pipped the Zimbabwean team of Lionel Coventry, Elliah Mbulawa and Jaulani Sibanda 14-13. 

Botswana also got off to a winning start after beating Kenya 23-10. The Botswana team consisted of Charles Diteko, Kabo Gaboutloloe and Kaizer Geche, while the Kenyan team consisted of Joseph Kitosi, Anwar Hamada and Kjellan Awour. 

In the women’s competition at the Eros Bowling Club, Namibia staved off a late challenge by Zambia to win their fours match 17-16.

Zambia took the eartly lead but after winning five strokes at the 10th end Namibia took the lead for the first time and held on to win by a single point despite a late charge by Zambia. 

Bianca Lewis and Diana Viljoen interviewed after the morning session’s play at the African States Bowls tournament on 27 June 2023. Video: Helge Schütz

The Namibian team consisted of Marietjie van den Bergh, Diana Viljoen, Amanda Steenkamp and Elzaan de Vries, while the Zambian team consisted of Foster Banda, Harriet Chilemya, Elizabeth Kamuchoma and Mildred Mkandawire. 

In other women’s fours matches, South Africa beat Zimbabwe 21-11, while Kenya beat Botswana 19-8. 

The South African team consisted of Jacqui Janse van Rensburg, Dezi Rosenblatt, Marizelle Roussau and Panache Ziramba, while the Zimbabwean team consisted of Caryn Sinclair, Heather Singleton, Melanie James and Caroline McDonnell.

The Kenyan team consisted of Esther Ndungu, Jedidah Mainga, Friday Mwangi and Celestine Masila, while the Botswana team consisted of Tshenolo Moshokgo, Gaoromelwe Pelemo, Molly Douma and Doreen Moleleki. 

The only match that Namibia lost in yesterday’s morning session was in the women’s singles competition, where Mildred Mkanawire comfortably beat Bianca Lewis 21-7.

In other women’s singles matches, Francesco Baleri of South Africa beat Jane Rigby of Zimbabwe 21-18, while Elandri Collington of Botswana beat Eunice Mbugua of Kenya 21-9. 

The tournament will continue daily till Friday. 

The PRO of Namibia Bowls, Michelle Crawford said the standard of bowls was very high. 

“The standard of bowls is unbelievably high – there is no margin for error, and the matches are very tough. Members of the public are invited to come and watch some top-class bowls action for the next few days,” she said.