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Ken Borland

Too many eek-worthy moments for Proteas as ants of Ireland pull off giant-killing act 0

Posted on August 03, 2021 by Ken

The ants of Ireland pulled off a giant-killing act as they beat a sloppy South African side who suffered far too many eek-worthy moments in the field, by 43 runs in the second ODI at Malahide in Dublin on Tuesday.

The Proteas had again won the toss and sent Ireland in to bat but the pacemen bowled poorly up front and at the death as Ireland posted a formidable 290 for five.

This time Ireland were both able to prosper up front in the powerplay and keep wickets intact. Paul Stirling and Andy Balbirnie took them to 49 without loss in the first 10 overs and their opening stand was eventually worth  64 off 82 balls.

But in a powerful top-order performance, Balbirnie then added another 60 for the second wicket with Andy McBrine (30) and the Ireland captain went on to a superb 102 off 117 balls, really leading from the front and providing the foundation for the win.

Harry Tector (79 off 68) and George Dockrell (45 off 23) then provided a scintillating end to the innings as they hammered wayward death bowling for 88 runs in the last seven overs.

Spinners Tabraiz Shamsi (10-1-42-1) and Keshav Maharaj (10-0-50-1) were the best of the South African bowlers, doing a fine job in the middle overs.

Apart from the woes of the seamers, the Proteas fielding was also extremely creaky, with four catches going down that should have been caught and messy ground-fielding also being the order of the day.

Janneman Malan was the top-scorer for South Africa as they were bowled out for 247 in the penultimate over.

The rookie opener struck a powerful 84 off 96 balls, with four sixes, making up for the early loss of Aiden Markram (5) and Temba Bavuma (10).

He was well-supported by Rassie van der Dussen (49 off 70) in a third-wicket stand of 108 in 22 overs, but South Africa then fell away badly, once again exposing the lower middle-order and the finishing ability of the team as a problem.

Malan will wryly consider that he could yet found himself out the team for the third and final match on Friday as Quinton de Kock obviously needs to return.

He will also be kicking himself for getting out when he did though, caught sweeping spinner George Dockrell to cow-corner, and when Van der Dussen was trapped lbw by McBrine in the next over, it was the hammer blow from which the Proteas could never recover.

Members Council & Sascoc likely to discover today what punishment Mthethwa will hit them with 0

Posted on April 26, 2021 by Ken

Cricket South Africa’s Members Council and Sascoc are likely to discover on Monday what punishment sports minister Nathi Mthethwa is going to hit them with after the stunt they pulled at the weekend’s Special General Meeting of the cricket body, leading to the new Memorandum of Incorporation designed to improve governance not being passed.

In a clearly orchestrated move, Sascoc president Barry Hendricks was parachuted into the SGM, having earlier turned down an invitation to just be an observer, and then delivered a prepared address that basically warned the Members Council that Sascoc would cancel their membership if they went ahead with the amendments to their constitution.

Hendricks had explicitly been warned by Mthethwa, in a letter last week, to not interfere with the process, and now he and Members Council acting president Rihan Richards have been called to a meeting with the minister on Monday.

“You cannot believe how annoyed the Minister is,” sources close to Mthethwa told The Citizen on Sunday.

A statement released by the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture on Sunday said the minister was disappointed the Members Council had acted “in bad faith” and he has been left with “no further option but to exercise his rights in terms of Section 13 (5) of the Sports Act” and he “will be taking the necessary steps required to exercise his rights in terms of the law”.

It is likely that he will tell CSA that they are no longer recognised by the Department of Sport, which would lead to them being unable to play any international cricket.

The Interim Board, having failed to win over the recalcitrant Members Council, now only remains in name and will prepare their final report for Mthethwa, their term of office having ended with the SGM at the weekend. It is believed several directors have decided to take no further part in cricket’s affairs.

Cricket South Africa, already in troubled financial waters before the Members Council/Interim Board impasse, will now be in dire straights because leading sponsors and broadcasters are already believed to be preparing to jump ship. One official with knowledge of CSA’s financial situation said a ban on the Proteas would probably mean the organisation would be bankrupt and unable to run the game before the start of next season.

CSA taking no chances with Covid, De Bruyn pulled after close contact with +ve test 0

Posted on March 15, 2021 by Ken

That Cricket South Africa are taking no chances with Covid was borne out on Wednesday as Titans batsman Theunis de Bruyn was pulled from the final day of their 4-Day Domestic Series match against the Knights in Centurion.

De Bruyn has had close contact with someone who has subsequently come down with symptoms of Covid and tested positive for the virus. Although the Proteas batsman has himself tested negative, the decision was made on Friday morning to pull him from the game between the two pool leaders as a precautionary measure, with another international, Heinrich Klaasen, replacing him.

Wicketkeeper/batsman Klaasen was initially rested from the game with a knee niggle, but now could well get a bat in the afternoon with the Titans on 258 for two in their second innings at lunch, leading by 107.

The 28-year-old De Bruyn has a franchise batting average of 46.98 and was considered a hot property in the early stages of his career. But in recent years he has been dogged by injuries, eye problems and illness and has lost his Proteas place after playing 12 Tests and two T20 Internationals.

De Bruyn scored a century in the opening match of the season against the Cape Cobras, but in 10 innings since then he has just 146 runs to his name, including 28 in the first innings of the game against the Knights.

Not even the service of government enough to save Aussie tour 0

Posted on February 05, 2021 by Ken

Not even calling in the service of government to grant the Australian cricket team VIP travelling status to South Africa was enough for Cricket Australia (CA), as they pulled the plug on their scheduled three-Test series against the Proteas on Tuesday.

Cricket South Africa (CSA) released a statement on Tuesday recording there “immense disappointment” at CA’s decision, which they described as “regrettable”. In the diplomatic world of corporate press statements, this was a strongly-worded criticism.

Which was not surprising considering how CSA have bent over backwards to try and accommodate the Australians.

Apart from granting the Australian touring party VIP passage to and from the airport, CSA had also offered up the Irene Country Lodge for their exclusive use, meaning the Proteas would have moved to a different hotel. They have also altered their travel plans for the ongoing Pakistan tour, bringing the Test squad back early and sending a second-string outfit for the T20 series.

“The protocols we had proposed to CA were unprecedented. Firstly, we had agreed that our own Proteas team would enter the bio-secure environment [BSE] 14 days prior to the arrival of the Australian team, thus altering our planning during the current tour of Pakistan. Amongst some of the other key arrangements made were that all four areas – two hotels and two venues – had a protocol to implement a strict BSE with no contact with anybody outside this area. 

“We subsequently agreed to two separate BSEs and had granted Australia full and exclusive use of the Irene Country Lodge, which we shared with Sri Lanka, with a minimum staff present on site. In terms of the arrangements, the Proteas were to move to a separate hotel altogether. Furthermore, all hotel staff, match officials and even bus drivers were to enter the BSE 14 days prior to Australia’s arrival. 

“In addition, CSA had also committed to importing an Australian tracking system at great cost to ensure proper tracking of close contacts in the event of a positive test. The touring team was also going to be granted VIP access through the airports, after government intervention to ensure this privilege. These are just some of the protocols that CSA was to put in place. We had really gone the extra mile to make sure that the tour would proceed,” CSA’s chief medical officer Dr Shuaib Manjra said.

Given the suspicion of CSA’s BSE protocols, which have enabled them to host a Test series against Sri Lanka without incident, and a visit by England in which none of the touring players contracted Covid-19, as well as stage the Momentum One-Day Cup in Potchefstroom without a single positive test, it seems South African cricket’s station in global cricket in the near future will be a long way removed from the Big Three of Australia, England and India.

“It is indeed sad that after all the engagements and effort made to ensure a secure visit by our Australian counterparts, the tour has been derailed. CSA has incurred significant costs related to the planning stages and the cancellation of the tour represents a serious financial loss. In this challenging period for cricket and its member countries, we believe the stance taken by CA is regrettable and will have a serious impact on the sustainability of the less-wealthy cricket-playing nations,” CSA acting chief executive officer Pholetsi Moseki said.

Given how late CA have pulled out – they were due to arrive in two weeks time – those losses are estimated to be around the R50 million mark.

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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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