Namibia v Ireland, I'Cup, Windhoek, 1st day October 3, 2008

Ireland limp as 25 wickets fall in Windhoek

Cricinfo staff

Ireland 69 (Klazinga 4-11, Snyman 4-22) and 77 for 5 (White 1*, Johnson 9*) lead Namibia 119 (Connell 4-24) by 27 runs

Twenty five wickets fell on an extraordinary opening day to Namibia's Intercontinental Cup match against Ireland in Windhoek. Ireland, who need to win both of their last two matches in order to qualify for the final, lead by 27 with only five second-innings wickets intact.

Namibia inserted Ireland and soon had them reeling on 43 for 4, before Alan Cusack fell to Sarel Burger for 23, the only double-figure score of the innings. Ireland's middle and lower order offered little resistance to Louis Klazinga who picked up 4 for 11 from 7.3 overs. In under 30 overs, Ireland were blown away for 69.

However, the tourists fought back valiantly, as Jan-Berrie Burger was caught behind off the county-pairing - who have only just finished their season - of Niall O'Brien and the returning Boyd Rankin. While Rankin kept it tight from one end, Peter Connell continued to pick up wickets at the other, and when Gerry Snyman was caught by William Porterfield off Andre Botha, Namibia had collapsed to 37 for 7.

Their tail had other ideas though, with Bjorn Kotze cracking 28 and Tobias Verwey, the wicketkeeper, a brisk 20. Kola Burger hit four fours in a spirited 16 as Namibia gained a vital first-innings lead of 50.

Batting for the second time in a day, Ireland again struggled, limping to 77 for 5 after Botha smacked 29 from 28 balls. He was run out shortly before the close, and Ireland have it all to do if they're to deny Namibia another Intercontinental Cup win.