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Ken Borland



Bursting with pride over Faf 0

Posted on December 01, 2016 by Ken

 

I think it’s fair to say most South African cricket fans almost burst with pride when Proteas captain Faf du Plessis produced the most magnificent riposte to all his detractors with his century on the first day of the third Test against Australia in Adelaide.

Under huge pressure for a week – hounded by the International Cricket Council’s desire for a scapegoat and persecuted by the Australian media, who even went so far as to launch a physical assault through the pushing-and-shoving goon with a microphone, Will Crouch – Du Plessis played an innings of immense mental strength, skill and determination as he rescued the South African innings from total collapse in tough conditions.

The Adelaide airport incident was undoubtedly a set-up because there were go-pro cameras stationed ahead of time on the walkway and all media were well aware that Du Plessis was not allowed to comment anyway as per ICC rules.

The South African camp believes the original ball-tampering video was placed in the media’s hands by Cricket Australia and, desperate for something to deflect from the massive problems in their cricket, the media pushed it to the limit.

At which point the ICC stepped into the fray and the song-and-dance about the Proteas captain doing two entirely legal things at the same time – eating a sweet and using his saliva to shine the ball – and something the Australian team themselves have sportingly admitted they do as well, turned into a full-scale operetta.

The ICC’s behaviour in this matter has been truly pathetic and to hear CEO David Richardson whingeing on Friday about how disappointed he is that Du Plessis is appealing, as is his right, his guilty verdict astonished me.

Richardson is a trained lawyer and yet he thinks Du Plessis has been fairly treated when the ICC laid the charge and appointed one of their own employees, match referee Andy Pycroft, as the judge, with other employees, the umpires, as the star witnesses. To make matters worse, because the ICC wanted to rush the whole process to completion before the start of the Adelaide Test, Du Plessis was denied the right to have the legal representation he wanted, being unable to fly them in from South Africa in time.

I know this all happened in Australia, but to make it an absolute kangaroo court was taking things too far.

If Du Plessis is guilty of an offence, what about all those cricketers who put sunscreen on and then wipe their sweat on the ball? The infused mixture is a wonderful ball-shiner.

What about the ubiquitous practice of chewing gum and then using your saliva to polish the ball?

If Richardson really wants to uphold the integrity of the game then perhaps he should be applying his mind to the blatant shortcomings in the laws of cricket.

Du Plessis’ tremendous performance in adversity has had even more people wondering if he should not continue as captain even once AB de Villiers returns.

Personally, I rate Du Plessis as the more natural captain and probably someone who wants the job more. But you cannot just ditch De Villiers as he has done little wrong as captain and also has a wonderful cricket brain. Convenor of selectors Linda Zondi has said all the right things in this regard.

I believe you have to leave that sort of decision to De Villiers himself and, with his workload issues, he may well decide to hand over the reins to Du Plessis.

The only other issue is that Du Plessis might have been the batsman earmarked to make way for De Villiers, but you surely cannot leave him out after his Adelaide masterpiece?

Dolphins in strong position v Titans after first day 0

Posted on December 11, 2015 by Ken

The Dolphins will enter the second day of their vital Sunfoil Series match against the Unlimited Titans at SuperSport Park in Centurion in a strong position after they dismissed the home side for just 267 and then reached 51 without loss at the close of play on the first day on Thursday.

 

The Titans had elected to bat first, but national opener Dean Elgar made only a brief visit to the crease, surviving one delivery and then being bowled second ball by Mathew Pillans.

The highly-promising Theunis de Bruyn and Henry Davids, the Titans captain, then added 95 for the second wicket as the Titans went into the lunch break on 95 for one.

The runs flowed freely straight after the interval, with De Bruyn scoring 52 and Davids 79, the partnership being extended to 137, before the persevering Pillans made the breakthrough.

De Bruyn’s concentration deserted him as he prodded outside off stump and was caught behind by Morne van Wyk off Pillans.

Daryn Dupavillon then struck two major blows against the Titans when he dismissed Davids, well-caught at second slip by Daryn Smit, and Roelof van der Merwe, who had the gross misfortune of being caught down the leg side for a duck, in the space of three deliveries.

Graeme van Buuren (34) and Qaasim Adams (24) restored order to the zoo with a fifth-wicket stand of 58, but left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj, who was the Dolphins’ other key bowler alongside pacemen Dupavillon and Pillans, made the crucial breakthrough by having Adams caught at slip by Smit.

From 209 for four, the Titans tumbled to 267 all out, with wicketkeeper Mangaliso Mosehle the only batsman to stand firm with a bright 41.

The pacy Dupavillon (19-4-67-3) and Pillans (21.1-4-80-3) spearheaded the Dolphins attack and were always at the batsmen on what looked a good batting track, while Maharaj, who at one stage had bowled six overs for four runs, returned outstanding figures of three for 51 in 28 overs.

Divan van Wyk and Imraan Khan, the Dolphins openers, made merry in the 40 minutes before the close, reducing the deficit to 216 runs.

The in-form Khan stroked six boundaries in the 31 balls he faced, breezing to 32 not out, while Van Wyk, the younger brother of captain Morne, was on 17 not out.

Khan was particularly severe on Ethy Mbhalati, taking the veteran seamer for three boundaries in the second over he bowled.

http://citizen.co.za/343089/titans-vs-dolphins-first-day/

Exciting Rabada spearheads strong 1st day for Highveld Lions 0

Posted on August 18, 2015 by Ken

Kagiso Rabada showed once again why he is one of the most exciting teenagers in world cricket as he spearheaded a strong first day for the bizhub Highveld Lions against the Dolphins in their Sunfoil Series match at the Wanderers on Thursday.

Rabada dismissed three of the Dolphins’ top four batsmen and with Hardus Viljoen running through the lower-order with the second new ball, the Lions had reduced the Dolphins to 289 for eight when bad light stopped play with one over remaining to be bowled.

The 19-year-old junior world cup winner is not only a wonderfully athletic quick bowler, but is also mastering the important art of control and adapting to different surfaces. On a Wanderers pitch that certainly provided assistance with the new ball but was otherwise pretty flat, Rabada maintained an excellent length and was rewarded with fine figures of four for 65 in 23 overs.

The one top-order batsman not to fall to Rabada was opener Imraan Khan, who scored 29 before being dismissed in highly unusual fashion.

Pumelela Matshikwe forced Khan back into the crease with a delivery that spat back at the left-handed batsman and, as the ball went behind Khan from his defensive bat, it hit the glove on the hand that he had taken off the bat.

The senior Lions players were alert to the handled the ball rule and Khan became the first South African since Free State wicketkeeper/batsman Lefa Mosena, against Limpopo in 2007/8, to be dismissed in that way.

The unlikely wicket left the Dolphins, who had won the toss and elected to bat first, on 53 for three, but the momentum then shifted the way of the visitors as the pitch settled down against the softer ball.

The wristy Cody Chetty and the determined, experienced Daryn Smit dominated the second session as they took the Dolphins to 156 for three at the tea break.

Smit had scored a dogged 60, the tenacity he showed in handling the aggressive short-pitched mode of attack from around the wicket by the fiery Chris Morris being one of the highlights of the day.

But the resistance came at a cost and the blow Smit took behind the ear from Morris in the fifth over before the interval eventually caused him to retire hurt in the second over after the break.

Chetty and Smit had added 107 for the fourth wicket off 231 balls, but the unfortunate departure of Smit did not stop the runs from flowing as captain Morne van Wyk came to the crease and the fifty partnership came up at a run-a-minute.

There was little inkling of the carnage to come when Australian exchange umpire Gerard Abood waved the second new ball around at the start of the 82nd over with the Dolphins cruising on 238 for three.

A couple of half-volleys from Rabada in the fourth over with the new ball gave Chetty (106) the opportunity to register his fourth Sunfoil Series century, a gritty effort that saw some fine strokes for his 16 boundaries off 192 balls, but some equally impressive defence and the ability to pick up singles all over the field.

But that was the high point of the day for the Dolphins: from 253 for three when Chetty reached three figures, they lost five wickets for 26 runs.

Three balls after his century celebrations, Chetty’s stay of 312 minutes was ended by Rabada nipping a delivery back into him and just clipping the bails; there were more high-fives for the Lions soon thereafter as Viljoen trapped Van Wyk lbw for 44 with the next delivery and four balls later also had Graham Hume adjudged leg-before for a duck.

Both decisions by Abood were contentious – Van Wyk was well forward while the left-handed Hume seemed to have been struck outside the line of off-stump – and they wrested control of the day away from the Dolphins.

Rabada then had Mathew Pillans (2) caught behind and Viljoen removed Keshav Maharaj (13), Neil McKenzie tumbling backwards and taking a spectacular catch at first slip, before Tshepo Moreki (2*) and Daryn Dupavillon (8*) battled through to stumps and lived to fight another day.

http://citizen.co.za/330233/rabada-leads-example/

Cook reaches illustrious landmark & puts Lions in command 0

Posted on March 25, 2015 by Ken

Stephen Cook became just the fourth batsman to score 10 000 runs in South African domestic first-class cricket as he led the bizhub Highveld Lions to a commanding position on the first day of their top-of-the-log Sunfoil Series match against the Unlimited Titans at Willowmoore Park in Benoni on Thursday.

Cook showed great shot-selection and poise in reaching 108 not out before bad light stopped play at 4.15pm, with 25 overs still scheduled to be bowled, with the Lions on 264 for two.

It was a typically methodical innings by Cook, who in the process joined the illustrious trio of Graeme Pollock (12409), Peter Kirsten (11835) and his own father, Jimmy Cook (11307), in scoring 10 000 domestic first-class runs.

The Lions captain seldom looked threatened, but he did survive a chance on 32 when Heino Kuhn missed a catch at slip off left-arm spinner Roelof van der Merwe, who presumably aired his frustrations in the changeroom because it was the last ball before lunch.

The Lions had elected to bat first on a brownish, dry-looking pitch after winning the toss, and Rassie van der Dussen took the attack to the Titans bowlers as he breezed to an 84-ball half-century, the visitors going to lunch on 92 without loss.

Van der Dussen fell seven overs after the break, top-edging a hook at left-arm seamer Rowan Richards to fine-leg, where Junior Dala took a good running catch. Van der Dussen’s 65 off 109 deliveries had taken the Lions to 114 before the first wicket fell.

Cook went to his half-century soon afterwards and, with the Titans bowlers contriving to bowl on both sides of the wicket, and often too short, the Lions piled on 125 runs in 28 overs in the middle session, going to tea on 217 for one.

The Lions have high hopes for young Dominic Hendricks and he is starting to repay their faith this season, the left-hander scoring a dashing 63 off 87 balls to take his four-day average to 39 this season, with four half-centuries.

Hendricks hammered 11 fours and a six and added 115 off 158 balls with Cook for the second wicket, their partnership ending in the fifth over after tea when he pushed at a delivery outside off stump from Richards and Mangaliso Mosehle, the Titans wicketkeeper, dived to his left to take the catch.

Neil McKenzie (13*) then joined Cook and their partnership had already reached 35 when play was halted.

Down in Port Elizabeth, the Chevrolet Warriors’ capitulation to 203 all out was music to the ears of the struggling defending champions, the Nashua Cape Cobras.

Paceman Lizaad Williams and unorthodox spinner George Linde operated well in tandem as they shared six wickets and fast bowler Dane Paterson claimed two.

Richard Levi and Omphile Ramela then took the Cobras safely through to stumps on 11 without loss.

After the Cobras won the toss and bowled first, Paterson removed Michael Price for a duck in the first over and then had Jon-Jon Smuts caught behind for a single in the seventh over.

David White (38) and Ryan Bailey (37) added 43 for the third wicket, before Linde broke the partnership.

Simon Harmer dug in for 33 off 72 deliveries, but the Warriors only got to 203 thanks to a last-wicket stand of 53 between Sisanda Magala (32) and Basheer Walters (24*).

In Kimberley, Imraan Khan marked his recent return to the Sunfoil Dolphins line-up with his second successive century, scoring 127 to usher them to 251 for four against the Chevrolet Knights.

Divan van Wyk scored 57 as the Dolphins, who elected to bat first, put up a solid opening stand of 168.

Off-spinner Patrick Botha removed both openers, before the hostile Quinton Friend got busy with the second new ball and claimed two more wickets to give the Knights some late cheer.

 http://citizen.co.za/307726/cook-makes-history-books-first-day-sunfoil-series/

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    James 1:5 - "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him."

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