Wednesday, 18 December 2019

Christiaan Oberholzer nabbed a brilliant hat-trick and figures of five for 22 to help Northerns join four other teams to have won both their matches on Day 3 of the Khaya Majola Cricket Week taking place in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands on Wednesday.

There were also double wins for KwaZulu-Natal Inland, Eastern Province and Western Province, while the Central Gauteng Lions maintained their hundred percent record at this year’s national week despite the day’s T20 matches being interrupted by inclement weather.

Oberholzer starred for his side with bat and ball in their second match against Limpopo. The Hoerskool Garsfontein pupil played a crucial role in dismantling Limpopo’s batting order, taking a timely hat trick in the 9th over to help dismiss them for 76 within 16 overs.

He then combined with Jordan Hermann (35*) for a 68-run opening stand, contributing 31 to make light work of the chase and secure a nine-wicket victory. 

In Northerns’ first encounter of the day, Simeon de Bruyn top-scored with a valuable 78 off 40 deliveries (11 fours) to propel them to 184/5 before they restricted Border to 126/3 to win by 58 runs.

KZNI recovered from a slow start to the week with two victories against Northern Cape and South Western Districts, mainly thanks to their opening batsman, Nicholas Hatton, who led the charge. In their opening match, Hatton (42) and Andile Semelane (45) got their side off to a strong start, posting 152/4 before limiting the winless Northern Cape to 112/6.

In the following clash, Hatton went one better, notching up his half-century (50 off 48 balls; 4 fours) as KZNI ended on 107/8 after SWD’s Kevin de Kock picked up four for 23.

Despite the players being taken off the field due to lightning in the second innings, resulting in a revised target, KZNI fought hard with the ball as South Africa under-19s fast bowler, Mondli Khumalo defended 10 runs off the last over to leave their opponents seven runs short on Duckworth-Lewis-Stern (DLS) method.

Elsewhere, EP recorded two convincing, 40-run and eight-wicket victories over Namibia and North West, respectively. After winning the toss in their first match, they amassed 126/6 against the visiting nation before Namibia only managed to reply with 85/9 following an inspired spell of four for seven from EP’s Aiden Meyer.

Against North West, EP had Nicholas Keevy to thank for his unbeaten 59 off 51 balls (4 fours, 1 six) as they chased down their opposition’s first innings score of 124/7, that saw Christopher de Freitas also record a fifty (58 off 52 balls; 5 fours 1 six).

Meanwhile, WP walked away with two nine-wicket wins against Limpopo and Border, with their latter game also halted in the second innings due to a threat of lightning. Imraan Philander led from the front with a return of four for eight to help bowl out Limpopo for 57 before they chased it down with just a single wicket to fall.

It was a similar story against Border after the team from the Eastern Cape posted a competitive total of 130/7 before the weather changed for the worst to reduce the overs, with WP only needing a score of 61/1 to be victorious.

The other double winner was Gauteng, who defeated city neighbours, Easterns by 36 runs after a match-winning 65 off 46 balls (3 fours, 4 sixes) from Heinrigh Pieterse despite a valiant effort from Easterns’ Neil Bothma (50 off 35 balls; 8 fours). They followed that up with a 23-run DLS triumph over Mpumalanga with the help of 3/28 from Lucky Nhleko.

In the other action, Reeza Alexander (50*) shone in Free State’s eight-wicket win over Mpumalanga. The Bloemfontein-based outfit then lost to Easterns later in the day by four wickets on the DLS method.

KwaZulu-Natal Coastal went down by three wickets in an enthralling encounter against SWD to kickstart their day, before bounced back with a cliff-hanger victory over Northern Cape, with the team from Durban hitting a four on the last ball to seal a two-wicket win (DLS).

Erlank Bernard top-scored for Northern Cape with a 51-ball 74 in that same match.

Boland’s openers, Ruan Terblanche (53) and Andrew Whaits (65) were the main protagonists for their side on a day of mixed results after suffering an eight-wicket defeat against North West before beating Namibia by 47 runs.

All scorecards from Day 3 of the Khaya Majola Cricket Week can be located on www.websports.co.za.

Day 4 will resume on Thursday, with the fixtures arranged on a strength to strength basis.

Khaya Majola Cricket Week – Day 4 Fixtures

Central Gauteng Lions vs Western Province (MHS Hannahs Oval)

Northerns vs Eastern Province (MHS Gathorne Oval)

North West vs KZN Coastal (PMB Oval)

KZN Inland vs Free State (Hilton -Hart-Davis Oval)

Easterns vs Boland (Hilton Weightman-Smith Oval)

Mpumalanga vs SWD (St Charles College)

Namibia vs Limpopo (Weston Patterson Oval)

Border vs Northern Cape (MHS Meadows Oval)