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Ken Borland



Coach Pretorius not hitting the roof as Lions hope for sun 0

Posted on May 10, 2024 by Ken

The DP World Lions ladies team will be hoping for two days of sun and better basics as they take on the Six Gun Grill Garden Route Badgers in Johannesburg this weekend, following their disappointing trip to Durban three weeks ago.

The Lions were frustrated to have their one-day match against the Dolphins abandoned due to rain, seeing them slip to fifth in the standings, and they then suffered a 10-wicket defeat in the T20 game.

But it’s not like coach Shaun Pretorius hit the roof or anything, he knows our DP World Lions ladies are not far off from winning form. Just one win in the One-Day Cup will lift them back up to third.

“Things didn’t go according to plan in Durban, and there were small things that we can learn from; the only way you’re going to learn those lessons is on the park,” Pretorius said.

“I’m quite confident actually that if we stick to the basics and follow our game-plans, then we have got enough ability to win this weekend. There are still good things happening around the team, there’s no stress.

“If we execute in the right phases of the game, if we get a grip on the game and then hang on to it, then we are capable of a bonus point win which has a massive effect on the log. It’s about handling situations, not overthinking things. We must focus on the ball being delivered now and not look too far ahead. One ball can change the game,” Pretorius said.

They may be feeling a little blue after recent results, but Pretorius has been reminding our #PrideOfJozi of past successes and epic performances like chasing 250 twice at the DP World Wanderers Stadium before.

Our Pride will be without Chloe Tryon and Shabnim Ismail, who are in India for the IPL, and young stars Karabo Meso and Jenna Evans, who are representing South Africa at the Africa Games in Ghana.

But the DP World Lions are not about individuals, but the system, and Pretorius backs the squad for this weekend to put their hands up in the key phases of the game.

Proteas star Tazmin Brits battered a century off the Lions in their meeting in Oudtshoorn in November, but our Pride will not be overly focused on her. Besides, the DP World Lions have experienced, quality Proteas batters of their own in Kirstie Thomson, Sunette Viljoen-Louw and Nonkululeko Thabethe.

Lions overtake all rivals on last bend & will now host 4-Day final 0

Posted on April 17, 2024 by Ken

The DP World Lions men’s team overtook all their opposition on the last bend and we will now host the CSA 4-Day Series final against Western Province following our impressive victory over the Titans on a sporty Centurion pitch last week.

After the frustration of a couple of draws, our Pride delivered the goods when it really mattered, beating the Titans by five wickets to claim top spot on the log after the last round of league fixtures. The DP World Lions’ red-ball game is now running like a finely-tuned motor, having dominated and being unbeaten in all their four-day matches since losing to the Warriors in Gqeberha in early December.

While the SuperSport Park pitch certainly favoured the bowlers, Lions head coach Russell Domingo was happy with the surface and says he hopes for another result pitch, but one that is fair to the batsmen, at the DP World Wanderers Stadium from Wednesday.

“The guys were fantastic against the Titans on what I thought was a good pitch. I was really pleased with the way we played and now we can take that confidence into the final. We’ve played some really good cricket lately, although we’ve had some flat pitches where we’ve struggled to finish off teams,” Domingo said.

“All I want at home for the final now is a good cricket wicket – one that rewards good batting and if you bowl well then you’ll get wickets. I will always advocate that because I believe the guys need to learn how to play long innings and how to dismiss batsmen on good pitches. We don’t want anything extreme and over five days I have no doubt we’ll get a result.”

With the current bowling unit performing so well, Lutho Sipamla making an impressive return to action last week, and Duanne Olivier and Tshepo Moreki available again after Proteas Test duty in New Zealand, Domingo may well toy with the idea of once again fielding five seamers and spinner Bjorn Fortuin.

The batting unit ought to be confident of putting enough runs on the board, especially with Zubayr Hamza, top of the competition averages, set to return after Test duty and Temba Bavuma also possibly available, depending on his rehabilitation schedule.

“It’s going to be a very tricky selection and we also need to check on the fitness of a couple of guys. But it’s great to have all of those options. I know Temba is very keen to play and Zubayr has been great for us this season,” Domingo said.

“You want all your best players to play in a final, but you also need to stay loyal to the players who have put you there. A lot of guys have played really well to get us into the final.”

A case in point is the top-class century scored by Josh Richards, which gave the DP World Lions a vital lead against the Titans. It was the first time he has been past fifty since the second match of the campaign, in mid-November, but the return to form came at a vital time.

“Josh’s innings was a game-changer, he was the one guy to get a big score in the match. It was very tough against the new ball and he’s had a few things not go for him this season. But he’s a really good opener and he showed how desperate he is to score runs,” Domingo said.

It’s the tenacity and character that Richards and the #PrideOfJozi have shown that will stand them in good stead against the World Sports Betting Western Province team, who are coming off a big win against previous log-leaders the Dolphins.

‘We are not a 1-man show’, Mulder says after he & Klaasen destroy JSK 0

Posted on February 08, 2024 by Ken

MAGNIFICENT – Heinrich Klaasen in full flow at the Wanderers.
Photo: Richard Huggard (Sportzpics)

“We are not a one-man show,” Wiaan Mulder said when asked why the Durban Super Giants have made it all the way to the SA20 final following their 69-run demolition of the Joburg Super Kings in the last Qualifier at the Wanderers on Thursday evening.

But if truth be told, their emphatic victory was at most a two-man show as a scintillating partnership between Mulder and Heinrich Klaasen carried the game well out of the Super Kings’ reach.

Klaasen and Mulder added 101 for the fifth wicket off just 38 balls, transforming a match in which Joburg seemed to have the upper hand for the first dozen overs. They lashed 112 runs in the last seven overs, including 29 runs being plundered off both the 15th over bowled by Imran Tahir and the 18th bowled by Sam Cook.

The incredible onslaught carried the Super Giants to 211 for six after they had been sent in to bat. The stand between Klaasen and Mulder was the best ever for Durban’s fifth wicket, beating the unbeaten 84 Klaasen and Matthew Breetzke put on against the Pretoria Capitals at SuperSport Park last season.

The Super Giants then kept chipping away with the ball, dismissing Joburg Super Kings for 142 in the 18th over.

The Durbanites did not have a great start, being 52 for three after seven overs, but Sri Lankan Bhanuka Rajapaksa, making his SA20 debut, helped Klaasen stabilise matters with his composed 35 off 23 balls as 43 was added for the fourth wicket. They then had the breathing space to launch the most stunning assault in the closing overs.

“We kinda knew the pitch had something in it and it was important to have a partnership,” Mulder said. “It’s not like we said we were going to pull the trigger, but we had a couple of match-ups, one thing led to the next and it just happened.

“A couple of soft balls got me going, then Klaasie got going and we all know how devastating he is when he’s firing. He’s arguably the best T20 batsman in the world at the moment. He’s a superstar and to score 74 off 30 on that pitch is a joke.

“I don’t think over 200 was par, maybe 180. It was really hard to score when they bowled into the pitch, but we had a couple of opportunities when they went full. And the way Klaasie was striking it, he turned 180 into more than 200. If the bowlers missed by a foot, they were in the stands, and maybe there were a few execution errors,” Mulder said.

The all-rounder will surely have changed some perceptions about him as a T20 player as his superb, vital 50 not out off just 23 balls continued his strong form this season.

While Klaasen will undoubtedly be the key man when DSG take on the Sunrisers at Newlands on Saturday, the defending champions will know their opponents have in-form, contributing players right through their line-up.

Breetzke and Jon-Jon Smuts have both made consistent runs and five DSG bowlers have taken more than 10 wickets.

“We are very similar to the Sunrisers in that we’ve had consistent performances from different people and that’s what wins competitions,” Mulder said. “To win competitions doesn’t take one person, it’s about how the players and management look after each other. In any successful team, the people play for the team.

“The most important thing is the environment and trying to create a good culture. There’s no unnecessary pressure put on us and there’s no nitpicking from anyone. That’s a big part of why we will be playing in the final,” Mulder said.

Elgar looking forward to home & a juicy steak on the braai 0

Posted on December 30, 2023 by Ken

Proteas captain Dean Elgar says he is looking forward to getting home and enjoying a juicy steak on the braai following his team’s 2-0 hiding in the Test series against Australia, but at least some of the hurt and embarrassment was eased by the draw they managed to secure on the final day of the third Test in Sydney on Sunday.

South Africa came through the flames on Sunday, managing to stretch their first innings from 149/6 to 255, and then making 106/2 in their follow-on innings to deny the sizzling hot Australians a 3-0 sweep. They are not scores that would usually prompt satisfied celebrations, but this Proteas team needs small victories at the moment.

“We had a conversation last night where we said we could either lie down today and let Australia roll us, creating more embarrassment, or we could fight it out for the full final day,” Elgar said.

“It was really great to see how the team responded and there were a lot of learnings today. Being hurt and embarrassed probably go hand-in-hand, but maybe we feel that a bit less now. We showed a lot of fight and there were positive signs.”

Elgar must have felt like he was a piece of meat being braaied in the flames as he endured a miserable series, scoring just 56 runs in six innings.

“I could never get going in this series and the one time I did, I managed to run myself out. I can accept being caught down the leg-side twice, but three or four times highly irritates me. That’s something different. Generally there is a way you get out, and bowlers target that.

“Ten years into my Test career and now there’s something new. I’ll have to look at it. There have been a few conversations between me and the batting coach about some extra work.

“But for now I just want to get on a plane, go home, chill out, braai, go to the bush and play some golf. Taking as much time off as I want is what I need,” Elgar said.

The 35-year-old said he still has big ambitions, however, around the whole tricky business of fixing South Africa’s Test fortunes.

“There are four-day games in February before the two Tests against the West Indies. I still have the hunger and drive, no doubt. And I really believe there’s space for CSA to entertain motivating the players more who play this format.

“There’s room for discussion around compensation for the purest format, and we also need to play more games. At the moment the number of Tests is being stripped back and we are behind the pack,” Elgar pointed out.

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    Philemon 1:7 – “Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.”

    “Every disciple of Jesus has a capacity for love. The most effective way to serve the Master is to share his love with others. Love can comfort, save the lost, and offer hope to those who need it. It can break down barriers, build bridges, establish relationships and heal wounds.” – A Shelter From The Storm, Solly Ozrovech

    If there’s a frustrating vacuum in your spiritual life and you fervently desire to serve the Lord but don’t know how you’re meant to do that, then start by loving others in his name.

     



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