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Ken Borland

Lions bucket overflowing with success after men & women go 4/4

Posted on May 30, 2024 by Ken

Following on from the CSA 4-Day Series triumph, the DP World Lions’ bucket was overflowing with more success over the weekend as both the men’s and ladies teams won both of their matches for a perfect 4/4 record.

The DP World Lions men’s team began their CSA T20 Challenge campaign with convincing victories over the GBets Rocks at home and against the Auto Investments North-West Dragons in Potchefstroom.

The nine-wicket win over the Dragons earned them a bonus point, while they were one run away from also earning the fifth log point when they hammered the Rocks by 44 runs at the DP World Wanderers Stadium.

The DP World Lions ladies thrashed the Six Gun Grill Garden Route Badgers by eight wickets with 22 overs to spare in their one-day match, and then won a thrilling T20 match against the same South-Western Districts side by just two runs.

Proteas star Ayabonga Khaka was the Queen of the DP World Wanderers as she took three for 10 in seven overs in the 50-over encounter and then claimed four wickets in a matchwinning burst in the T20 clash.

Our #PrideOfJozi were only defending a total of 114 for five and SWD were cruising at 84 for two after 14 overs when Khaka, who has played 154 matches for the Proteas across formats, returned to the attack. She left the visitors feeling like they had been a victim of a robbery as the 31-year-old sent them crashing from 84 for two to 107 for six, all with great skill.

With fellow Protea Tumi Sekhukhune (4-0-25-1) also bowling superbly at the other end, the Badgers ended with 112 for seven. Left-arm seamer Relebohile Mkhize also struck two vital blows up front after SWD had made a blazing start, removing both openers, Tabitha la Grange and in-form Proteas star Tazmin Brits, ending with phenomenal figures of two for seven in her four overs.

The DP World Lions had been sent in to bat and their total of 114 for five was built around solid top-order contributions rather than anyone really filling their boots – Madison Landsman (30), Kirstie Thomson (23), Diara Ramlakan (26) and Sinalo Jafta (31 not out) all chipped in well.

In the 50-over match, the tale of the tape was totally one-sided as the Badgers could not measure up against a daunting DP World Lions attack. Key batter Brits was bowled first ball by a tremendous delivery from Khaka and the rest of the line-up tapped around a bit as they could only muster 121 before being bowled out.

Khaka (7-2-10-3) led the way, but captain and spinner Kgomotso Rapoo was a real threat in the middle overs with two for 24 in nine overs and seamers Lehlohonolo Meso (6-2-18-1) and Sekhukhune (7-1-20-1) kept the pressure tight.

A high-energy run-chase then saw the DP World Lions chase down the target in just 28 overs, Sunette Viljoen-Louw scoring an electrifying run-a-ball 46 not out, while Nonkululeko Thabethe (33) and Thomson (24 not out) provided industrious support.

The DP World Lions men’s team look well set to take on the big fish in Division One after they saw off the challenges of the Rocks and Dragons with impressive ease, taking a healthy haul of nine log points into Wednesday’s match against the HollywoodBets Dolphins at Kingsmead.

Having been sent in to bat by the Rocks, our Pride moved swiftly and efficiently to a record-breaking 223 for five in their 20 overs – the franchise’s highest ever total and the highest in domestic cricket at the DP World Wanderers Stadium.

Ryan Rickelton’s 75 off just 39 balls was a special innings and Rassie van der Dussen then provided the big finish as he raced to 42 not out off only 22 deliveries. It was a well-balanced batting effort though with Reeza Hendricks (28 off 18), Temba Bavuma (26 off 16) and Wiaan Mulder (22 off 11) all batting with good intent.

The Bolanders were caught on the hop by Evan Jones (4-0-34-2) coming on first change and he struck twice in his first over, while left-arm spinner and captain Bjorn Fortuin (4-0-21-2) inevitably lured a couple of batsmen to their destruction.

But the bowling effort of the night belonged to Kwena Maphaka, making his T20 debut for the Pride. The 17-year-old understandably left the field beaming after he finished with an outstanding three for 22 in his four overs, looking every bit a class bowler of premium talent with his quality left-arm seam.

The match against North-West in Potchefstroom was even more one-sided as the #PrideOfJozi’s attack scythed through the Dragons batting line-up, bowling them out for just 103. Spinner Junaid Dawood had his moment to shine as he took two wickets in his first over and ended with three for 23 in four, while Maphaka again showed he is comfortable at this level with two for 11 in three overs up front with the new ball, and Fortuin again excelled with two for 14 in three overs.

Hendricks then mowed 57 not out off 30 balls to rush the Lions to victory in 10.4 overs, putting on 76 for the first wicket for the second match in succession with Rickelton (34 off 26).

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