Namibia wicketkeeper-batsman Raymond van Schoor has died in Windhoek at age 25, five days after suffering a stroke during a match. Van Schoor was batting on 15 during Namibia’s five-wicket win over Free State in a CSA Provincial One-Day Challenge contest when he collapsed on field and was taken by ambulance to a local hospital.Van Schoor remained hospitalised since then but never recovered and was pronounced dead on Friday night. Cricket Namibia president Richard Frankle paid tribute to van Schoor in a written statement announcing the tragic news.”Raymond was a tremendous asset to Cricket Namibia and the national cricket team,” Frankle said. “He was taken far too early from us. We however accept that Almighty God needed him to represent the heavenly angels! May his soul rest in peace!” Van Schoor was a mainstay of the Namibia batting line-up since making his national team debut in the CSA Provincial One-Day Challenge against North West at age 17 in 2007. In the same week, the right-hand batsman made his first-class debut against Canada in the Intercontinental Cup, opening the batting for Namibia – making 46 and 2 – in an eight-wicket win. In all, he played 92 first-class matches, scoring 4303 runs at 27.40 including five centuries and 20 half-centuries with a career-best 157 in 2010 against Bermuda in the ICC Intercontinental Shield. Across all formats, he scored more than 8000 runs for Namibia in over 200 career matches.
At age 22, van Schoor was named the Player of the Tournament at the ICC World T20 Qualifier in the UAE after topping the averages with 324 runs at 54.00, including a career-best 79 not out against USA. During the event, van Schoor won three Man of the Match awards – against USA, Uganda and Italy – and finished the group stage as the leading scorer with 323 runs in seven matches as Namibia went 7-0 before losing to Afghanistan and Ireland in the knockout stage.That same year, van Schoor was recognised for his top form from Cricket Namibia after he was named 2012 Cricketer of the Year at their annual awards. Van Schoor served as both vice-captain and captain for Namibia in the past, leading Namibia a total of 40 times, including in the 2011-12 and 2012-13 Cricket South Africa Provincial One-Day Challenge and Three-Day Cup competitions.