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Ken Borland

All-rounder Phehlukwayo anointed for greater things 0

Posted on March 15, 2016 by Ken


Andile Phehlukwayo turned 20 last week and has already been anointed as a Dolphins bowling all-rounder fit to follow in the footsteps of legends like Shaun Pollock and Lance Klusener, but he has already achieved so much as one of the successes of South African cricket’s development pipeline.

There was clearly something special about Phehlukwayo when he played for the Dolphins in the 2014 Champions League while he was still in his matric year at Glenwood High School. He scored 22 off 17 balls against the powerhouse Chennai Super Kings in his first game and then 37 off just 18 deliveries against the Kolkata Knight Riders.

Since then, his bowling has become his strongest suit, especially in limited-overs matches, and he has produced several match-winning performances for the Dolphins, most notably with his nerveless, skilful death bowling in the RamSlam T20 Challenge playoff against the Cape Cobras.

He certainly does not want to be pigeon-holed, however, as a limited-overs specialist and the work he has been putting into his long-format game is bearing fruit, with Phehlukwayo taking a career-best four for 39 against the Warriors in East London last weekend.

“I was thrown in the deep end playing in the Champions League while I was still at school, which was a tough one, but I’m grateful for the experience and there’s no pressure on me. I’m my own player, different to other all-rounders, but obviously I would like to try and be like guys like Jacques Kallis and Lance Klusener. I need to perform for  SA A first, and there are lots of guys performing as all-rounders in South African cricket, like Chris Morris and David Wiese. I just need to be consistent, I know there will always be chances for me and I believe one day I will play for South Africa, even if maybe not in the next two or four years,” Phehlukwayo says.

The son of a domestic worker in Margate, who earned a hockey scholarship to Glenwood and was then noticed when he went to cricket trials, Phehlukwayo has every reason to be proud of what he has already achieved despite such humble beginnings.

“My big goal is for my mom to come and watch me play. I was fortunate to have good support in the background and my coaches believed in me. For me it’s just about working hard and not giving up on my dream. I never thought that I would be playing franchise cricket at this age and at some stages I thought I would never play professional cricket.

“I’ve made quick progress as a bowler, T20 does fast-track you, you need to adapt quickly in that format and practise your skills. Playing for SA A over the last couple of months, bowling to people like Jos Buttler and Eoin Morgan, taught me that you’ve got to be on-song and stay on your game-plan, back yourself, always believe in yourself. It was definitely an experience I won’t forget, especially bowling a couple of long-hops to Morgan!”


Klusener axed because Dolphins see themselves as trophy-winners 0

Posted on February 28, 2016 by Ken



The Dolphins sacked Lance Klusener as their coach because they see themselves as a franchise that should be regularly winning trophies and not merely being in contention, CEO Pete de Wet told The Citizen on Monday.

Klusener was removed with immediate effect after four years at the helm, with Yashin Ebrahim and Roger Telemachus taking over as caretaker coaches. Because Klusener’s contract was not going to be renewed at the end of April, it was agreed that it made sense for him to go now so both parties could plan better for the future.

Under Klusener, the Dolphins’ only trophy was the 2013/14 RamSlam T20 Challenge. They reached the final of the same competition this season, but finished fifth in the Momentum One-Day Cup and are currently fourth in the Sunfoil Series, more than 20 points behind the third-placed Knights.

“Lance worked really hard to set up a solid foundation for the team, but the decision is not just driven by the results this season, but the board looked at the last three years. The expectation is that we should challenge for trophies year-in and year-out, the same as any other franchise. The reason we’re in business is to win trophies,” De Wet said.

Klusener said trophies should be seen as only part of the story, given the development of the players under his guard.

“I was a bit surprised by the decision if you consider where we’ve come from in the last four years, I don’t feel my journey has finished. There was no real reason for it, I wasn’t given any inkling before that the results were a problem. Before I took over, the Dolphins hadn’t won a trophy for 10 years.

“We won a trophy, made a couple of finals and semi-finals, but it’s about more than just trophies, quite a few players were produced for the national teams. I like to think that things like politics are part of the past, I just coached and kept my head down.

“But I would do it again, I was part of something special with the Dolphins. Hopefully I can now be part of bigger and better things,” Klusener told The Citizen.



New skipper Amla commands global respect – Klusener 0

Posted on June 08, 2014 by Ken

Hashim Amla is a captain who commands huge respect around the globe and South Africa’s leadership will not be perceived as a weakness, according to Dolphins coach Lance Klusener.

Amla, despite being a reluctant captain in the past, will lead South Africa’s Test team on a daunting tour of Sri Lanka next month and Klusener, who knows the new skipper well from his time with the Dolphins, is optimistic that Graeme Smith’s successor will prosper in his new post.

“Hashim will bring a lot of calmness, he has a smart head on his shoulders and he’s fairly innovative, he’s not scared to try things.

“But most importantly, Hashim has a lot of respect internationally, which is important as a captain. It means the opposition don’t see the captain as a point of weakness,” Klusener said.

Hashim Amla - globally respected

While Amla’s previous captaincy experience – a season in charge of the Dolphins in 2004/5 in which he averaged 54.38 in the four-day competition, scoring three centuries, including a superb 249 in the final against the Central Eagles – provides a clue as to whether the extra responsibility will affect his batting, Klusener said this was the only remaining question to be answered.

“The biggest question is how it will affect his game because he’s been reluctant to lead in the past. It’s a small question but it’s the most important one because he needs to prove he can do both jobs together. Someone like Morne van Wyk [current Dolphins captain] lives for that and that’s what I’d like to see with Hashim, that he can handle both being a key batsman and the captain on the highest stage.”

One of Amla’s imminent tasks will be getting the right team balance for the first Test starting in Galle on July 16 and Klusener said there were warning bells in this regard.

“We’ve been caught out in the past playing two frontline spinners. I know it’s tough for quick bowlers over there, but that is our strength. Is playing two spinners our best attack? Sometimes even when the pitches are dusty, you should play four pacemen and rely on them to get swing.

“We must play our best attack – do you field two average spinners or two good seamers, remembering too that Sri Lankan batsmen play spin very well,” Klusener warned.

“If the pitches are turning then inconsistent bounce can also be a massive factor. I would like the other spot to go to someone who can bowl 140-145km/h and will get reverse swing and inconsistent bounce,” Klusener said.

Former SA allrounder Lance Klusener

It seems the national selectors are leaning towards JP Duminy being the second spinner, leaving South Africa with the option of playing a specialist batsman at number seven or four pacemen and leggie Imran Tahir.

Klusener, who played 49 Tests and 171 ODIs in a stellar career, added he was also concerned that South Africa now had several captains – Amla in Tests, AB de Villiers in ODIs and Faf du Plessis in T20s.

“We have three captains and I would prefer just one but there are obviously demands on the body and that person’s time. But it must be easier to keep a handle on things if there is just one or maybe two captains.

“The other players are left wondering ‘does this other captain back me, where do I fit in under him?’ It does create some instability.

“I only had one captain at a time and I think it worked great,” Klusener added.

Whatever question marks still remain about South Africa’s new era, one thing that is certain is that Amla will bring tremendous conviction to his new role as captain.


SA pace bowling stocks not as full as they’d like 0

Posted on January 05, 2013 by Ken

WHILE there is still understandable euphoria over South Africa’s Faf du Plessis-inspired great escape in Australia, the series has provided evidence that the Proteas’ pace bowling stocks are not as full as they would like.

South Africa’s rise to the No1 ranking has been built to a large extent on the strike-bowling brilliance of Dale Steyn, Morné Morkel and Vernon Philander, but when one of the trio is injured or not bowling to full capacity, their attack does not look totally convincing.

Rory Kleinveldt has risen up the queue to become the next paceman in line and has played in both Brisbane and Adelaide. But he looked innocuous, save for his three-wicket burst on the third afternoon of the second Test.

Ryan McLaren, meanwhile, could get the chance to start his international career afresh in Perth after being flown over as bowling all-rounder cover for both Jacques Kallis and Philander.

But while this Test generation is dominated by a superb batting line-up and the Steyn/Morkel/Philander bowling trio, these things are cyclical, and fans will await the birth of the next generation of fast bowlers.

So far, the next generation has thrown up Marchant de Lange, who claimed 7/81 against Sri Lanka on his debut in Durban last December.

But seven months later, the Titans youngster developed a stress fracture of the lower back and has been in cotton wool ever since.

De Lange will not be fit to play in the two Tests against New Zealand in January but Vincent Barnes, the national selector and former Proteas bowling coach, who is taking care of the 22-year-old’s rehabilitation, is still pleased with his progress.

“I’ve been tasked with overseeing his recovery from what was quite a serious injury, and it’s a slow process. We’ve mapped it out with the Titans and they send me video clips of every training session he does and a weekly report from the physio.

“It’s going slowly but the big positive is that we’re doing it properly and he’s not being rushed. Marchant is now bowling pain-free off a short run-up and we’re working towards him playing again in late December. But he definitely won’t be ready for the Tests against New Zealand,” Barnes said on Tuesday.

While everyone will be hoping De Lange’s return is not an anticlimax, there is another, more established bowler plotting his own return in Durban.

Lonwabo Tsotsobe missed the tour to the Antipodes because his form, and reportedly his attitude, were at odds with what was required. But Dolphins coach Lance Klusener on Tuesday praised his work ethic with his new franchise team.

“Lopsy has been extremely eager to get stuck in and while I’m really happy with his effort, I’m just sad that he hasn’t had the wickets to show for how hard he’s been training. He’s done his job really well for us, he’s just been unlucky and I’m sure wickets are just around the corner for him,” Klusener said.

Since South Africa’s return from the grim days of apartheid, their fast bowling stocks have been the envy of many — current bowling coach Allan Donald leading the way for the likes of Klusener, Shaun Pollock, Makhaya Ntini and now Steyn and Morkel.

Barnes believes newcomers such as Kleinveldt, Chris Morris and Hardus Viljoen have the potential to swell that list.

“We need to give Rory time, and the important thing is he’s getting better, not worse. And Chris and Hardus have both been quite impressive and both have good pace,” Barnes said.

And talented young fast bowlers such as Beuran Hendricks, Marcello Piedt, Graham Hume and Duanne Olivier have the potential to add their names to that list as well.

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