Namibia withdraw from South Africa's provincial competitions

Petrus Burger is mobbed by his team-mates Getty Images

Namibia have withdrawn their team from South Africa's provincial competitions.

Citing challenges around logistics and expenses, Cricket Namibia took the "proactive" decision to end an involvement in South African provincial competitions that stretches back more than 20 years.

"Due to our geographic location, it is inevitable that our travelling distances, and the travelling times required, have become increasingly prohibitive with the increase in travel costs year on year," Cricket Namibia said in a statement. "Similarly the total number of days required to compete, inclusive of travelling, has posed increasing problems for our non-professional players."

Namibia reached the final of the Sunfoil three-day cup earlier this year, losing to KwaZulu-Natal, and though they will not compete this time around, Cricket Namibia said the fixture gap would hopefully provide new opportunities for the team. At the end of October, they will compete in the World T20 Africa Qualifier in Botswana, while in November they will take part in an Africa Cricket Association competition.

"It is our intention to use the openings in our fixtures list to arrange matches such as to mitigate the time and distance challenges mentioned whilst retaining the integrity of our national competitive calendar," read the statement, which also thanked Cricket South Africa for having provided them with opportunities, and looked forward "to the possibility of reengaging in the future".

Cricket Namibia is known to be in some financial strife at the moment and chief executive Peter Forster told The Namibian: "There were a variety of reasons and in the end, we didn't have a choice. We worked with the CSA to look at alternative arrangements, but it didn't work out."

As a result, the CSA has had to hurriedly revise its fixtures list for this season's senior provincial competitions.

"In order to minimize the inconvenience that has been caused, it has been resolved that the teams that would have hosted Namibia will play against the teams that would have travelled to Namibia," the CSA explained.