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Ken Borland



Taylor focuses on first & foremost being herself in 1st round, & finishes in 1st place 0

Posted on April 05, 2024 by Ken

SUN CITY, North-West – England’s Lauren Taylor concentrated on first and foremost just being herself in the opening round of the SuperSport Ladies Challenge presented by Sun International at the Lost City Golf Course on Wednesday, and it paid off as she finished in first place on the leaderboard.

Taylor fired a four-under-par 68 to enjoy a one-stroke lead over Vanessa Knecht, Ana Dawson, Pasqualle Coffa and leading South African Kaleigh Telfer.

The 29-year-old Taylor played the back nine at Lost City first, and made the perfect start with birdies on the first three holes and another on the 15th. A bogey-birdie finish to the back nine saw Taylor go out in 32, and she then came home in level-par thanks to a birdie on the ninth making up for a bogey on the par-five seventh.

“I was just trying to be myself out there and take it hole by hole,” Taylor said. “It was a good day. I made a hot start, it’s always nice to get three birdies first up, so then I just tried to keep being aggressive.

“All parts of my game were pretty good, but the best part was that I hit every fairway. My irons were also good and that’s always a good combo which will always give you chances. So I was hitting good shots and making birdies.

“I still gave myself some chances on the front nine but I just didn’t hole the putts. But I was very happy to finish with a birdie. I was feeling confident after a good week at Fancourt in the Dimension Data Pro-Am, but anything can happen in golf and you never know how it’s going to be on the day,” Taylor said.

The in-form Dawson, who led for most of the Dimension Data Ladies Pro-Am before eventually finishing tied-third, continued her fine form, her 69 including just one bogey – on the par-three 13th.

Telfer, who enjoyed an excellent Sunshine Ladies Tour campaign last year, posted five birdies with two bogeys to position herself just behind the leader.

Two South Africans – 2022 champion Paula Reto and amateur Isabella Ferreira, were two strokes back after shooting 70s, along with Romy Meekers of the Netherlands and Sweden’s Ellen Hutchinson-Key.

Ferreira also started on the back nine and reached the turn on one-over-par, but she was excellent on the front nine, collecting three birdies.

4 Boks who knocked the door down to be named in October for EOYT 0

Posted on November 16, 2022 by Ken

The next Springbok squad will be named in October for the end-of-year tour and here are four players who knocked the door down during the Rugby Championship and must be included in the group for the Tests against Ireland, France, Italy and England.

Jasper Wiese

The Leicester Tigers loose forward turns 27 in October and is clearly entering his prime, knocking over opponents on the gain-line and just being constantly busy in terms of work-rate. While it remains to be seen whether he will depose Duane Vermeulen at the World Cup next year, the great eighthman has some bouncing back to do after his injury problems, although he made an encouraging cameo off the bench at Kings Park this weekend. At the moment, Wiese is certainly bringing the fire though and is a real thorn in the opposition’s flesh.

Jaden Hendrikse

A series of polished displays means young Hendrikse surely now owns the No.9 jersey. Despite his tender 22 years, he has taken on the key tactical kicking role of the Springboks with aplomb, and has generally been slick and precise with his service, as well as offering some variety on attack. This Rugby Championship has proven he belongs in Test rugby.

Kwagga Smith

The former Springbok Sevens star made a series of crucial contributions at the breakdown through the tournament and, coming off the bench, he has been able to form a great partnership with whoever his other two loose forwards are, showing his experience and versatility. And it’s not just the flashy stuff Smith has been doing, he gets through a lot of ‘dirty work’ too. Most important has been the sheer energy he has brought from the bench, which is exactly what you want from your replacements.

Damian Willemse

The highly-talented 24-year-old will no doubt be in the Springbok squad, but will he be earmarked as a flyhalf, centre or fullback? Hopefully he will play flyhalf because the Springboks will need to sort out this key position post-haste. Handre Pollard will still be around, but has just battled to get the attack firing of late, while surely the time has now come to ditch Elton Jantjies, who is making more headlines off the field than on.

Willemse showed enough when he did play flyhalf in the Rugby Championship to suggest he has great potential there. He has an attacking mindset, is a steely defender and seems confident enough to be the team’s general. He will need to work on his kicking, but that should not be a problem for a player as skilful as he is.

Boucher admits insipid batting, but batsmen on tour were the best 0

Posted on October 27, 2022 by Ken

Proteas coach Mark Boucher admitted that their batting had been insipid in the Test series in England, but said the natural remedy of just finding other batsmen to take the incumbents’ places in the Big Time was not applicable because the batters on tour were the best available.

“The batsmen here have consistently been the best in the country,” Boucher said after the series loss but before the shock announcement that he would be standing down from his post after the T20 World Cup next month. “We always knew we would be under pressure if the conditions made the ball go around a bit against a good English bowling attack.

“You have to be able to trust your defence, but our issue was that we weren’t able to keep out the good balls. Quite a few technical flaws were exposed.

“But it’s a fine line between wanting the batsmen to play the way that got them here and changing too much. And this is not an academy of learning, this is Test cricket.

“We were forced into positions where we had to give opportunities to others, you can’t just keep playing with the same guys who keep failing. There’s a mental side to it too, and it can become like quicksand – the harder you try, the deeper you sink.

“Hopefully these batsmen will get it right next time they come here. We played some very good cricket, but we just couldn’t put the runs on the board,” Boucher said at The Oval.

Although Boucher is now likely to become a franchise T20 coach, he made a plea to cricket’s global administrators for more Tests per annum to be played.

“The only way to get experience is by going out and playing, and losing sight of Test cricket would not be great. I’m a purist, I love it and for me it is the truest form of the game. We need to take care of it.

“The heads of the game need to get together and decide how best we can play more Test cricket, we need to find a way.

“Test cricket is exciting, you very seldom see draws anymore, it’s attacking and nice to watch. The more we see of it the better,” Boucher said.

Focus once again on South African batting 0

Posted on October 27, 2022 by Ken

The Proteas batting has once again found itself under the spotlight as it was the obvious weak link in the 2-1 series loss to England.

The stats don’t lie when it comes to how poorly South Africa’s batsmen responded to the testing conditions in England: A bowling all-rounder, Marco Jansen, topped their averages at just 27.33, while their leading run-scorer was opener Sarel Erwee, who managed just 127 runs in five innings, and also scored their only half-century of the series.

Keegan Petersen and Dean Elgar were the only other batsmen to score more than a hundred runs in the series, but both of them had poor campaigns, averaging less than 25.

The figures, combined with the low output of runs in Test cricket in general over the last three years, once again casts a bad light on domestic cricket and the pipeline’s ability to deliver batsmen who are ready for the international game.

Most alarmingly, there are players in the national team who are trying to take on world-class bowlers, in bowling-friendly conditions, with techniques and mindsets that are not sturdy enough to handle the challenge.

Cricket South Africa needs to realise that the more teams they give a seat to at the top table and access to more rands, the more diluted the strength of their premier domestic competitions become.

Instead of the top 24 bowlers being spread around six teams in the top division, there are now eight teams and therefore weaker bowling attacks, leaving batsmen with a mountain to climb when they try to bridge the gap in terms of intensity and skill at international level.

The situation is made worse by how few domestic first-class matches the Proteas bowlers play, and the effect of quotas in also weakening bowling attacks is another elephant in the room that should be considered.

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    John 15:16 – “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.”

    Our Christian experience begins when the Holy Spirit starts working in our imperfect lives. An inexplicable restlessness and a feeling that nothing can give you the satisfaction you yearn for, could be the Spirit working in you.

    Even when God calls you and chooses you to serve him, there may be inner conflict and confusion because you are not always willing to do what God is asking of you.

    But this inner struggle is part of spiritual life … Commit yourself to God and open yourself to the inflowing of the Holy Spirit.

    It is by great grace that you were chosen by God to serve him and to live to the honour and glory of his name. Surrender unconditionally to the Lord and you will discover that your life gains new meaning and purpose.



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