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Ken Borland



Maharaj is not going to agonize over SA’s poor ODI record in England 0

Posted on August 22, 2022 by Ken

Stand-in Proteas captain Keshav Maharaj is a cool, laidback customer and so he is not going to agonize over South Africa’s poor record in ODIs in England as they left for a three-match series starting on July 19.

The Proteas have played England in 26 ODIs on their home soil and have won just eight of them, losing 16 and two matches being washed out. In the last decade, South Africa have won just three of the last 10 matches against the reigning world champions.

“I’ve only personally played two ODIs in England, so it’s difficult for me to give deep insights,” Maharaj said on the eve of their departure on Thursday. “Maybe we have been a bit slow to adapt.

“That series I played in we lost 2-1 and we only really found our rhythm in the last game. England have done really well lately with their new coaches’ fresh philosophies.

“But it’s important for us to just play according to our game-plan, to focus on what we want to do and do the basics well. It’s going to be a good test and we always want to try and beat the best.

“I can’t really isolate facets of our game that haven’t worked, we just need to trust our process and execute much better. I’m sure the lots of hard work we have put in will bear fruit,” Maharaj calmly stated.

With the next 50-over World Cup now just 15 months away, Maharaj is hoping the desire to be in the squad for that showpiece tournament in India will provide the ignition for his side to make Jos Buttler’s first series in charge of England a torrid one.

“Obviously in our ODI performances over the last year or two we have not shown the execution we’ve wanted,” Maharaj said. “But we’ve picked a squad to suit various needs and combinations.

“I’m sure the game-plan will now come to fruition with the different combinations we have tried. World Cup time obviously causes selection problems because all the players want to put their hands up.

“As captain, you want to create space for everyone to thrive, but they also need to align with the game-plan. You want to give individuals the platform to shine within the team game-plan.

“It might be good to start the tours with the ODIs, we are so used to playing the Tests first and then filtering into the white-ball games. But now the guys are fresh and hungry to showcase their talent,” Maharaj, standing in for the injured Temba Bavuma, said.

CSA have to mull a different legal strategy v Boucher 0

Posted on June 10, 2022 by Ken

With the disciplinary hearing just a week away, Cricket South Africa’s legal team may have to mull a completely different strategy to try and get rid of Proteas head coach Mark Boucher following Paul Adams’ decision to not testify against his erstwhile team-mate and the likelihood that former national team assistant coach Enoch Nkwe is also not going to participate.

Adams issued a statement at the weekend in which he said he was not willing to be cross-examined over the allegations of racism he made at the Social Justice and Nation-Building hearings, which have been a central pillar of CSA’s case against Boucher.

CSA have also charged Boucher over his treatment of Nkwe, who resigned from his post in August last year, using the reasons he gave to the board as ammunition. But informed sources say Nkwe is not willing to present evidence, believing the disciplinary hearing is a matter between CSA and the head coach.

Boucher is facing charges of gross misconduct, with CSA seeking his dismissal, and, in terms of labour law, he has the right to have any witnesses against him cross-examined. If neither Adams nor Nkwe are there, his lawyers are bound to insist their statements cannot be included in the hearing.

Even though his accusers’ case would now seem to have gone to pot in a dirty pickle-jar bong, Boucher’s legal team say nothing has changed from their point of view.

“Mark Boucher said up front that all he was interested in was clearing his name, which has been tarnished,” Mohammed Chavoos told The Citizen on Monday.

“He welcomed the opportunity to do that at the hearing and that still remains the case. Our position has never changed.

“It’s up to CSA to deal with their witnesses, they were the ones who embarked on this process. All we want to do is exonerate Mark.

“It’s why labour law is there, the principle of letting the other side be heard, that’s what’s important. Mark has welcomed the chance to clear his name of these allegations,” Chavoos said.

In his statement at the weekend, Adams said he never intended to single out Boucher in the SJN hearings, where he revealed the existence of the “Brown Shit” fines meeting song, but the former Proteas spinner did say the wicketkeeper/batsman “should come and say sorry, if that’s enough” and also targeted Boucher’s appointment as Titans coach in 2016.

“We want to put South African cricket first and take the Proteas back to number one. In my view, Mark Boucher is the best coach for South Africa, that’s where he belongs,” Chavoos added.

Boucher’s disciplinary hearing on charges of racism is scheduled for May 16-20, with senior counsel Terry Motau presiding.

The SJN report has already been partially discredited by former director of cricket Graeme Smith winning his arbitration hearing, with costs, against CSA.

Van Tonder has shown willingness to dare to be different … & nothing will change now 0

Posted on September 30, 2020 by Ken

Danie van Tonder has shown his willingness to dare to be different and his commitment to an aggressive approach, and he is not going to change any of that when he tees it up early on Wednesday morning at Huddle Park Golf Club in the first round of the Vodacom Championship Reloaded, the final event of the Rise Up Series he is currently leading.

Van Tonder, given the incredible consistency he has shown in finishing in the top-10 in his last 13 events, dating back a year, will be the favourite in a two-horse race to win the order of merit for the Sunshine Tour’s return-to-play series, with Darren Fichardt trailing the 29-year-old from Copperleaf by more than R37 000.

George Coetzee is third, but is away in Europe, and Ulrich van den Berg is fourth, but nearly R112 000 behind Van Tonder, with the winner of the Vodacom Championship Reloaded taking home R95 100.

“Nothing will change, I’m just carrying on with practising and working hard. I’ve played practice rounds at Huddle Park both yesterday [Monday] and today [Tuesday] and the greens are nice and soft and rolling nicely, so that will suit my aggressive style. I’m going to go flag-hunting, I can hit the ball right at the pin and not worry about it bouncing off the green.

“I don’t mind what anyone else is doing, it’s the same for everyone and I will still just go out there and go for fairways and greens and make as many birdies as I can. There are four par-fives and nine par-fours, so if I can shoot six or seven-under then that will be a good round. It’s quite a nice course because I can hit Driver everywhere,” Van Tonder told The Citizen on Tuesday.

There are many in the local game who see similarities between Van Tonder and Bryson de Chambeau, the U.S. Open champion who is threatening to change the entire sport in ferociously single-minded fashion. The South African, who jokingly points out that he is a couple of years older than De Chambeau so he must have copied him, shares the same stiff-armed swing and unflinchingly aggressive approach with the American.

“I’ve always been happy to do my own thing. My swing is not textbook, so I had a lot of people advising me against pro golf when I started out. As I got better the critics started saying things like, ‘How do you plan on making a living out of golf with a swing like that?’ But luckily I didn’t listen too much. Fortunately I have a little bit of the water-off-a-duck’s-back attitude.”

Given how savagely dominant he has been in the Rise Up Series, there is no need for Van Tonder to change anything. It may be cruel the way he is depriving all the other struggling pros a share of the big prizemoney at the moment, but they can hopefully lift their own games to provide fierce competition in this final event.

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  • Thought of the Day

    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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