for quality writing

Ken Borland



Tenacious Highveld Lions’ colours not lowered yet 0

Posted on February 08, 2017 by Ken

 

The Highveld Lions may be languishing in fifth place on the Sunfoil Series log, but it’s been a topsy-turvy competition and their colours have not been lowered yet as they go into the final weekend of fixtures in South Africa’s premier domestic tournament.

The Lions are 11.28 points behind the log-leading Titans and 8.90 points behind their opponents at the Wanderers from Thursday – the Knights.

So they simply have to beat the Knights and hope that the Warriors manage to prevent the Titans from winning their match in Benoni. They could also do with the Dolphins and Cape Cobras drawing in Durban.

That the Lions are still in the running is thanks to their remarkable, last-ditch 14-run victory over the Warriors last weekend in East London, set up by a couple of bold declarations.

“We’re happy that we’re still alive and the key now is to win this weekend. We’ve played well at home over the last four years and it’s simple, we just have to control our own game and not concentrate on the others. We can’t have one eye on the other games because we’re up against a quality side in the Knights. But we will keep fighting like we did when we finished in the dark with just two or three overs left against the Warriors,” coach Geoff Toyana told The Citizen on Tuesday.

It was a special effort by the Lions attack to dismiss the Warriors for just 243 in 68 overs on a rainy final day and Toyana praised his bowlers after the weather had forced captain Stephen Cook to declare earlier than he would have liked.

“It was a great result and the character shown, the belief and fight, was very good. Aya Myoli (3-58) really came through for us by striking up front and kept running in, while Beuran Hendricks (3-70) and Bjorn Fortuin (3-39) were also very good on the last day.”

Keith Dudgeon and Nono Pongolo, who did not play against the Warriors, have been retained in the squad to meet the Knights and one of them could play if the Lions decide to go with an all-pace attack.

The Knights will come to Johannesburg with Theunis de Bruyn and Rudi Second amongst the most successful batsmen in the competition, while fast bowlers Duanne Olivier and Marchant de Lange have spearheaded their attack.

 

 

Contrasting wins leave Lions & Dolphins as only realistic contenders 0

Posted on January 04, 2016 by Ken

The bizhub Highveld Lions and the Dolphins will enter the last two rounds of the Sunfoil Series as the only realistic title contenders after they gained contrasting victories in the eighth round of fixtures that ended on Sunday.

The Dolphins won their virtual eliminator against the Unlimited Titans at SuperSport Park by three wickets, but not before an inspired attack had given them a major scare.

The Lions were always in control of their match against the Chevrolet Knights in Bloemfontein, although the home side made them work hard for victory as they batted for 98.4 overs in their second innings, eventually being dismissed for 289. That left the Lions with a target of just 97 for victory, and openers Stephen Cook and Rassie van der Dussen knocked off the runs at a canter, winning by 10 wickets in just 14.3 overs.

The Dolphins began their second innings on the final day in Centurion, needing just 177 runs for victory, but the Titans attack were certainly up for the challenge and the inconsistent bounce of the pitch certainly made the target a testing one.

The Dolphins openers, Divan van Wyk (2) and Imraan Khan (8) were both dismissed inside the first five overs as the visitors crashed to 10 for two.

Khaya Zondo and Cody Chetty briefly steadied the ship as they took the total to 55 before Chetty (20) let his side down with an awful waft outside off stump as Marchant de Lange returned for a fiery second spell and was definitely threatening life and limb.

Left-armer Rowan Richards was merrily swinging the ball from the Hennops River End and added to the chaos with the wickets of Zondo (15), Daryn Smit (2) and Andile Phehlukwayo (0), and suddenly the Dolphins were 58 for six.

But captain Morne van Wyk and Calvin Savage then produced the key partnership as they added 116 in 146 minutes, off 238 balls.

It was a stand of enormous skill and character on a tricky pitch. While such heroics can be expected from the veteran Van Wyk, whose 59 not out was his 28th Sunfoil Series half-century, Savage’s 53 was an exceptional effort by a 22-year-old playing in just his ninth four-day game.

Savage first of all blocked up his end, scoring just 15 runs from his first 77 balls, before defiantly striking five fours and a six as he and Van Wyk all but sealed victory.

Savage fell with just three more runs needed for victory, dismissed by De Lange, who finished with three for 66 in 18 overs, to go with the four for 68 he took in the first innings.

Richards was the pick of the Titans attack, with three for 35 in 17.3 overs.

The victory lifts the Dolphins to 98.26 points, while the Lions are at the top of the log with 115.84. Defeat has left the Titans clutching at straws on 84.90 points.

In Bloemfontein, the Johannesburg-based franchise claimed two Knights wickets in the opening hour as the home side went from 76 without loss overnight to 95 for two with the dismissal of Gihahn Cloete (37) and Tumelo Bodibe (4).

But Reeza Hendricks showed that he is ready for more international cricket as he grafted his way to 61, Rudi Second was similarly determined in scoring 67, and Patrick Botha motored to 42 to take the Knights to 218 for three before the wheels fell off.

The Lions were once again able to show what a tight bowling unit they are as Kagiso Rabada took three for 52, Chris Morris and Hardus Viljoen claimed a couple of wickets each and Dwaine Pretorius wrapped up the tail, the last seven wickets falling for 71 runs.

Having finished just short of an almost identical target last week against the Warriors, this time the Lions did not allow rain or bad light to have any chance of denying them as Cook powered to 49 not out off 34 balls and Van der Dussen struck 46 not out off 55 deliveries.

The third match of the weekend, between the Nashua Cape Cobras and the Chevrolet Warriors, ended in the dullest of draws at Newlands in Cape Town.

The Warriors deserve credit, however, for batting through most of the final day and scoring 256 for three to all but clear the first-innings deficit of 257.

The visitors were 88 without loss overnight and the opening stand grew to 155 as David White scored 57 and Michael Price 94. Colin Ackermann then came in and continued the good work with 53 not out.

Robin Peterson was the only successful Cobras bowler on the final day, the left-arm spinner taking three for 65 in 32.1 overs.

http://citizen.co.za/344463/lions-and-dolphins-enter-last-two-rounds/

Titans announce fixtures for pre-season Sixes tournament 0

Posted on June 06, 2014 by Ken

 

The Titans’ bold efforts to reorganise pre-season domestic cricket moved a step closer on Thursday with the announcement of the fixtures for the inaugural Global Softech Sixes to be played at SuperSport Park from September 4-7.

The Sixes tournament is the brainchild of Titans CEO Jacques Faul and is an attempt to attract a new audience to an enterprising brand of cricket, with an emphasis on corporate hospitality.

The first Global Softech Sixes will bring the six domestic franchises and six African countries including South Africa to Centurion for an event that Faul is hoping will grow to rival the famous Hong Kong Sixes.

There are going to be eight five-overs-a-side games on each of the four days and the South African team to play in Hong Kong this year will be announced after the tournament.

A major attraction of the event is the chance it will provide for leading players in Zimbabwe, Namibia, Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania to play top-class cricket against the stars of the South African game.

“This is exciting for Africa cricket and our 23 member countries. It has never happened before in Africa, it is a special and unique concept, and it will be televised through the whole continent,” Cassim Suleman, the CEO of the Africa Cricket Association, said.

Africa Cricket CEO Cassim Suleman

Dolphins coach Lance Klusener said the Global Softech Sixes will provide some competitive preparation for his team ahead of their participation in the Champions League T20.

“Any time out in the middle before the Champions League will be like gold. It’s only five overs, so our batsmen can get used to swiping from ball one, and it will be even more useful to the bowlers, who get a chance to bowl an over of yorkers. We’ll be able to see where we are in terms of our skills,” Klusener said.

Fixtures

Thursday, September 4: 10h00 Cobras v Knights; 10h50 Titans v Warriors; 11h40 Dolphins v Lions; 12h30 Warriors v Cobras; 13h20 Lions v Titans; 14h10 Knights v Dolphins; 15h00 Cobras v Lions; 15h50 Titans v Dolphins.

Friday, September 5: 10h00 Warriors v Knights; 10h50 Dolphins v Cobras; 11h40 Knights v Titans; 12h30 Warriors v Lions; 13h20 Titans v Cobras; 14h10 Warriors v Dolphins; 15h00 Knights v Lions; 16h10 Franchise Sixes final.

Saturday, September 6: 10h00 Kenya v Namibia; 10h50 Uganda v Tanzania; 11h40 South Africa v Zimbabwe; 12h30 Tanzania v Kenya; 13h20 Zimbabwe v Uganda; 14h10 Namibia v South Africa; 15h00 Kenya v Zimbabwe; 15h50 Uganda v South Africa.

Sunday, September 7: 10h00 Tanzania v Namibia; 10h50 South Africa v Kenya; 11h40 Namibia v Uganda; 12h30 Tanzania v Zimbabwe; 13h20 Uganda v Kenya; 14h10 Tanzania v South Africa; 15h00 Namibia v Zimbabwe; 16h10 Africa Sixes final.

 

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  • Thought of the Day

    1 Corinthians 3:3 - "For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh and behaving only in a human way?"

    One of my favourite U2 songs is a collaboration with Johnny Cash called The Wanderer, and it features the line "they say they want the kingdom, but they don't want God in it".
    Many people say they believe in God, but they don't experience his loving presence. They may be active in Christian work, but only if they have their way. If they cannot be leaders, they refuse to be involved.
    Because they refuse to allow God to fill their lives with his love, they remain weak and powerless.
    Spiritual maturity means developing a greater love for others.

    "When the love of Christ saturates you, immature attitudes such as pettiness, jealousy and strife are dissolved.
    "It is only when you have an intimate relationship with the Lord that you receive sufficient grace to rise above this immaturity and enjoy the solid food that the Holy Spirit gives you." - Solly Ozrovech, A Shelter From The Storm



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