The first recorded history of cricket being played in the then South West Africa region was during the first World War in the Okonjande prisoner of war camp near Otjiwarongo.
However, photographs exist of cricket being played in Windhoek as early as 1909, when Namibia was very much a German colony. The South West Africa Cricket Union was formed in 1930 and the first organised matches were then played. From 1962, South West Africa participated in the South African Country districts tournaments on an annual basis. Players started to excel and the game became more popular. Shortly after independence, the Namibia Cricket Board was constituted.
The history of various clubs, which participated in the leagues in the Namibia Cricket season, is of real interest and importance. Some of the older clubs, which originated during and immediately after World War I still exist and have a proud history. Namibia became the 19th Associate Member of the ICC in 1992. It participated in all ICC Associate Trophies, and was runners up to the Netherlands in the ICC Trophy that was played in Canada to qualify for the 2003 ICC Cricket World Cup. Namibia was runners up to Ireland in the 2008-09 Intercontinental Cup. It has participated for many seasons in the Cricket South Africa provincial competitions and has proved very competitive against some of the top sides.
Its disappointing eighth-place finish in the 2009 ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier meant it was relegated to 2010 Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division Two and the 2009-10 ICC Intercontinental Shield. Due to winning the ICC Intercontinental Shield finals Namibia were re-instated to the ICC Intercontenetal Cup for the 2011-2013 season.
Youth Cricket has grown tremendously over the last few years and now has age-group teams that have participated in the ICC-ACA tournaments with great distinction. The development programme has been very successful and more local Namibians are being attracted to the game. Cricket continues to grow and is now recognised as one of the most successful sporting codes in Namibia. It has a proud record of achievements since independence and the challenge remains to involve and attract even more Namibians to participate.
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