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Erasmus is Cricketer of the Year




NATIONAL captain Gerhard Erasmus closed an excellent year by winning two of the top prizes at the National Cricket Awards on Friday evening.

He won the National Men’s Player of the Year award, as well as the Players’ Player of the Year award, after leading Namibia to their first-ever T20 World Cup with some outstanding performances at the qualifier in Dubai where he became the player of the Tournament Prize.

In addition to his batting and bowling exploits, he also set new standards with his brilliant fielding, while emerging as a smart captain with his tactical reading of the game.

Karl Birkenstock won the Most Improved National Men’s Player award after excelling for both the national side and his club Wanderers in the past year. He’s also one of the strongest players on the side, leading the strength and conditioning department from the front.

National coach Pierre de Bruyn won the Coach of the Year award after setting new standards with the national team. In addition to qualifying for the T20 World Cup, they also won the World Cricket League Division II title, achieving One Day International status, as well as the Africa T20 Qualifiers.

The Spirit of Cricket award was won by the seniors’ national team, which had also won the ICC Best Team Performance award earlier this year.

In the women’s category, Irene van Zyl won both the National Player of the Year and the Player’s Player of the Year, while Adri van der Merwe won the Most Improved Player Award.

Francois Erasmus, former president of Cricket Namibia, won the Lifetime Honoree Member of Cricket Namibia award after a 45-year career as a player and administrator.

He started playing for Windhoek High School in 1975 and represented SWA Schools from 1977 to 1979.

After independence, he represented Namibia as a player and later as a team manager, when Namibia qualified for their first ever World Cup in 2003.

He served as President of Cricket Namibia for 10 years, served on the Executive Committee of the International Cricket Council for 6 years and on the ICC Board of Directors for 5 years.

He was also a founding member of the current Premier League champions of Namibia, WHS Old Boys Cricket Club, and served as a patron of Cricket Namibia for three years.

Women’s cricket manager Hester Khan won a Service to Cricket Namibia award, while national fast bowler Ben Shikongo won the Raymond van Schoor award.

Wynand Louw won the ‘Groundsman off the Year’ prize; Nolene Winborn and Susca Loftie-Eaton won the Scorers awards; Claus Schumacher the referee of the year; Maryke Short the award for the most improved referee; and Jurita Potgieter awarded the Administrator of the Year.

Numerous other team and individual prizes have been awarded in the different leagues and formats of the game.

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