With Day 1 of Maritzburg College’s 60th annual Oppenheimer Michaelmas Cricket Week just 17 short days away I was clearing out my cupboard and came upon a December 2018 feature I wrote on Mike Bechet, the outstanding SA schoolboy cricket (and hockey) coach. The upshot is that my cupboard is still not cleared up… as I spent the next hour before going to the office reading and reminiscing on a remarkable man I came across for the first time in 1981.
Here are some of the SA School Sports magazine excerpts from that fascinating interview with Bech. Can’t wait to catch up with this legendary Durban-born DHS Old Boy and Jeppe first XI coach in the iconic Kent Pavilion on Goldstones.
Feature image: Mike Bechet with one of his Maritzburg College players who have made it big on the world stage and the SA sports star who inspires him the most – David Miller – pictured here at the SA Cricket Awards Evening in 2016.
Impressive schoolboy cricket coaching credentials of Mike Bechet.
So what does Bech – the longest-serving member of the SA Schools and SA U19 selection panel – look for in a schoolboy cricketer?
CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW FOR EXCITING NEWS
Bech, is Gauteng schools cricket stronger?
‘Our school structures are arguably the best in the world’
The Mike Bechet you don’t know.
Bech’s thoughts on the life skills that cricket teaches schoolboys.
So what is it about schoolboy coaching that drives Bech?
Mike Bechet is director of cricket, head of boarding and a teacher/coach at Jeppe. So Bech, the teacher/coach or professional coach dilemma?
‘Surround yourself with the right people’ – Mike Bechet
Mike Bechet pays tribute to his family.
Four of the best. Guess who played first team cricket too?
Durban High School appear to have struck gold in their recent appointment of Nico le Roux as director of rugby.
The glowing credentials of new DHS rugby boss Nico le Roux speak for themselves and there is likely to be much to celebrate for the boys both on and off the field.
Nico has served as Impala Rugby Club in Rustenburg’s director of rugby for the last 4 years, until the 2019 Gold Cup-winning final.
Impala RC won the event twice and were silver medallists once.
In earlier years of a distinguished coaching career that had begun in 1994, the-then All Blacks coach John Mitchell employed Nico as his technical advisor.
In his 26-year coaching career Nico has also worked in various capacities across the coaching spectrum.
In no particular order here, these include roles from technical adviser, High Performance analyst, HP manager, attack coach, course presenter, coach educator and head coach.
Apart from Impala RC, among his notable employers and teams have been the Lions, Blues and Chiefs Super Rugby franchises, the All Blacks, the junior All Blacks, SARU and the Investec Academy (Elite player group).
To complete the package, Nico holds a B.Comm honours degree in sports management.
The DHS rugby boys and coaching staff appear to be in good hands – and then some.
Durban High School is pleased to announce the appointment of the School’s new Director of Rugby, Nico Le Roux.
Nico, a former technical advisor to the New Zealand All Blacks under coach John Mitchell, has worked with, among others, the Blues, the Chiefs, the Junior All Blacks, in addition to the All Blacks.
He has enjoyed a long and successful career coaching rugby, which began back in 1994 when he was appointed as the Lions High Performance Manager.
His career took a huge leap in 2001, when he was appointed as the Technical Advisor to the Chiefs Super Rugby Franchise.
Nico was then appointed by the Waikato Rugby Union as their Technical Advisor.
His period in New Zealand also included working as Performance Analyst for the Blues Super Rugby Franchise and the North Harbour Rugby Union.
The highlight of his stay in New Zealand was when he was appointed as Technical Advisor to the All Blacks.
In 2009 Nico returned to South Africa and was appointed as the Attack Coach for Boland Rugby Union.
From the Boland, Nico was appointed by SARU in their Coaches Education Department. He also consulted for the Bulls.
In 2014 Nico joined the Investec Rugby Academy as a course presenter and Head Coach of their Elite players group.
He was appointed as Director of Rugby of Rustenburg Impala Rugby. As the Head Coach, he has taken the team to several prestigious finals including the Community Cup and Gold Cup competitions.
Nico holds a B.Com (Honours) in Sports Management.
The DHS community welcomes Nico and his family to Durban.
Text source: DHS
With the U20 Rugby World cup just a few days away, some of the past rugby stars of the KZN10 who are representing the Junior Springboks in Argentina, share their thoughts.
Scotland 4th June
kick off: 15:30 SA time
Georgia 8th June
kick off: 15:30 SA time
New Zealand 12th June
kick off: 20:30 SA time
JJ van der Mescht
We wish the boys well as they try to reclaim the world crown.
As we look forward to a KZN10.com Super Saturday featuring Kearsney College hosting Maritzburg College and DHS travelling to Michaelhouse, let’s look back on the recent match-up between the fine young men from Botha’s Hill and the worthy lads from School.
Kearsney hosted DHS for a great Saturday afternoon’s running rugby in which neither team disappointed.
Tracey van den Aardweg feature image: Kearsney fullback Derick Marshall in possession during the win against DHS on Stott Field last Saturday
The visitors got the scoreboard rolling with a penalty in the 12th minute from a breakdown infringement in the Kearsney half.
The hosts responded quickly and scored a classic counter-attack try through fullback Derick Marshall, 8th man Massimo Fierro and winger Luke Dudley doing some good work before passing to scrumhalf Jordan Bamber who outsprinted the cover defence to score under the posts.
The versatile Bamber converted his own try for a 7-3 Kearsney lead.
The lads who stand by the motto Carpe Diem then scored from a trademark pick-and- go via prop Bradley Taylor after sustained pressure to stretch the lead to 12-3.
DHS responded well, scoring a converted try by captain and lock Taariq Kruger from a quickly-taken tap penalty, to reduce the deficit to 10-12.
Kearsney had the last say in the half with a spectacular try by fullback Derick Marshall after excellent play by centre Connor de Bruyn.
Half-time score 17-10 for the hosts.
Kearsney started the second half at high pace but unfortunately the good work was undone with a handling error in close quarters.
DHS clawed their way back into the game, scoring a deserved converted try to level the scores at 17-17.
Kearsney, in coming back, played good rugby and were rewarded with a converted lineout-maul try by hooker Reid Stuart to restore the lead again at 24-17.
DHS responded with a penalty to close the score at 24-20 to the hosts.
The hosts showed solid, resolute defence while DHS displayed exciting attacking skills.
With the try count reading 4-2, Kearsney were worthy winners.
Outstanding players for Kearsney were Marshall, Dudley, De Bruyn, Bamber, Fierro and captain Ox Carmody.
The win gives the Kearsney squad and coaches Barend Steyn and Nico Breedt momentum leading into Saturday’s much-looked-forward-to match with the Maritzburg College first XV on Stott Field.
Let’s hope Kearsney physio Scott Munroe has had a quiet week leading into this KZN10 Super Saturday muscle-up.
From the Durban High School perspective there is much in the way of good stuff for the team and coaches Ronnie Uys and Ruan Lombard to take away from the Kearsney clash ahead of Saturday’s encounter with Michaelhouse on Meadows – and a couple of finer points to iron out – perhaps from a defence perspective.
Again, KZN10.com hopes that DHS physio Marc Colia has enjoyed a quiet week.
* Meat of the text supplied by Kearsney – Jono mixed and matched, added bits and pieces here and there.
KZN Schoolboy Hockey results
A busy weekend for the boys, hat tip to Westville, big win against a quality school. KZN schoolboy Hockey is certainly something that we can be proud of.
Westville versus Jeppe
Maritzburg College versus Pretoria Boys
DHS versus Northwood
Glenwood versus Monument
Clifton College Versus Glenwood
Till next time,
KZN Schoolboy Rugby Results
Some great performances from the KZN10 schools.
Westville Versus Jeppe
Maritzburg College Versus Pretoria Boys
Quite simply an amazing performance from College away from home.
Glenwood versus Monument
DHS versus Northwood
Well done to Northwood going to DHS.
Till Next time,
This weekends KZN schoolboy rugby takes on a feeling of reprising the great trek as Monument and Jeppe head down to Durban to take on Glenwood and Westville respectively whilst Martizburg College head out of Province to take on Pretoria Boys. Northwood take a short trip to take on DHS.
On the U15 front all the Private schools in the KZN10 have sent teams up to the St Benedicts U15 ISRF.
Glenwood versus Monument
This should be a great clash between Monument and Glenwood. Depending on which rankings you follow Glenwood(7) sits three places above Monument(10).
Though Monument come into this clash having lost 2 games already their overall play has been impressive and it seems like Monument have finally got back line players to complement their always beefy pack of forwards.
That their two losses this season have come against Paarl powerhouses Paarl Gim and Paarl Boys and one in the last play of the game at that shows they can hang with the best around. Last weekends victory against Menlopark should fill the men from Krugersdorp with a fair bit of confidence.
No school should be surprised by the other as the coaches from both teams would have had a close look at teach other at the recent World schools festival in Stellenbosch.
What can be said of Glenwood as they remain unbeaten at this stage of the season. This is probably Glenwoods greatest test this season so the result on Saturday will go a long way in gauging just how good this team is. That the teams seem to be very evenly matched this year should make for great rugby but playing at home in front of a expectant, partisan crowd should tilt the game in Glenwoods favour.
In the age groups the advantage should lie with Glenwood as their under 14’,15’s and 16’s all rank considerably higher than Monument. The Glenwood U14 and U16 remain unbeaten this season so far.
Westville versus Jeppe
Jeppe sits 13 places above Westville at 27 whilst the later comes in at 40. Westville should have won last weekend against DHS so the general mood is that the schools are allot closer than the rankings suggest.
Jeppe’s last match a was narrow 19-18 victory at St Johns College last weekend and Westville lost 26-27 to DHS. Westville are due a complete performance, however, and hopefully they have settled on a pack configuration that suits their personnel because they certainly have the play makers to score points.
In the age groups Jeppe does seem to have an advantage at U15 level whist in the U16’s Westville seems to hold the advantage.
Northwood versus DHS
DHS lost a few influential players from last year and it does seem that they are lacking some experienced leaders in their team to make the right decisions at the right time. Their 2nd half performance against Framesby would be a case in point where they shipped almost 50 points in 30 minutes. Perhaps its just highlights just how inspirational Celimpilo Gumede and Phendulani Buthelezi before him were in galvanizing their teams.
The rankings do place Northwood higher than DHS due to their great early season form and some impressive outings at the Grey festival.
The game will be won and lost amongst the forwards though as both Northwood and DHS have skilful, elusive backs that can create chances from no where.
In the age groups DHS should win their matches, of particular note will be their more capable U14 outfit.
Maritzburg College versus Pretoria Boys
From all accounts this is PBHS’ strongest side in a while, though their 41-27 loss last week against KES doesn’t seem to suggest so. Their attacking back line play speared headed by Mikhail Edwards could cause the boys from KZN a few headaches.
As is the case with fixtures against these two schools the margins will surely be tight. Maritzburg College who played with great commitment last weekend against Glenwood, in a 7-15 loss, are due a win and get their season on the road. College will look for Siya Ningiza to continue his play from Glenwood.
At age group levels Maritzburg does seem to have the edge with their unbeaten U15 group leading the charge.
It promises to be a great weekend of rugby action as the teams all seem to be very evenly mathched.
Thats all for now, till next time,
KZN School Rugby and Hockey gets back in to the swing of things.
With the private schools still on holiday the government schools took centre stage this last weekend as DHS hosted Westville and Glenwood hosted Maritzburg College at Rugby and Hockey.
The first team rugby matches were compelling for different reasons as Westville and DHS put on a show of free flowing rugby in a 53 point thriller with DHS pipping Westville 27-26.
Whilst over on the Umbilo side of Durban Glenwood and College engaged in a arm wrestle of sorts to see which defense would crack first with Glenwood eventually running out 15-7 winners.
On the hockey side Westville continued their fine form this season by winning 6-0. Glenwood possibly a little more match sharp as they had competed in the Founders festival the weekend drew 2-2 with Martizburg College.
Here are the full Rugby and Hockey results from this weekend.
|DHS VS Westville Rugby
|DHS VS Westville|
To be fair Westville looked like they could score every time they built up any period of sustained pressure. At times though it seemed that in Westvilles desire to keep the ball alive passes were thrown that didn’t need to be and a hand full of opportunities were squandered by passes either not going to hand, the ball being lost in contact or just simply passing the ball to the opposition player.
Another area that really hurt the Westville cause was the throwing in at the lineout time. Often these came at the most inopportune times with Westville getting a throw in deep in DHS territory and the the jumper would be missed.
DHS on the other hand stuck to their task and scored some tries from sometimes out of the blue. The clip below probably encapsulates what type of game they had. Great flair and great instinct
Video courtesy of DHS tributes.
On the day Westville won more games than DHS on the Hockey and Rugby sides. A positive sign for DHS is that in the Hockey and rugby fixtures their U14’s by and large got the better of their Westville counterparts so the future indeed looks bright DHS.
DHS Vs Westville Full Hockey results
|*Westville 4th team|
Westville played fillers against Maritzburg College and the results were as follows
Glenwood and Maritzburg College Full rugby results
College played fillers against Linpark and Alexandre High school on the Friday afternoon
*1 Linpark 2nd, *2 Alex 1st, *3 Alex U16 A
Glenwood and Martizburg College hockey results(Home team first)
There is also some other rugby being played at the Kingswood 125 festival where KZN has 3 teams participating.
Hilton College continued their unbeaten ways by beating St Georges from Zimbabwe 21-12.
Clifton College lost a heart breaker to Graeme College 27-21 after leading 21-12 at half time.
Kearsney College lost to the hosts Kingswood College 23-15
Thats all from me for the moment.
Till next time,
Rugby takes center stage
Yesterday marked the start of the 2nd term for the government schools and would traditionally have signaled the beginning of the winter sports season with rugby boots getting the full on Dubbin Treatment and jerseys readied.
Of course much has changed over the last 20 odd years, but with the calendars of the private and government schools being particularly at odds with each other this year, much rugby has already been played. One notable observation has been that Hilton College’s and Glenwood’s 1st teams have played 5 matches already as opposed to Maritzburg College’s 2.
It has, nonetheless, been a busy holiday overall with many of the KZN10 schools taking part in festivals all over the country from U14 all the way up to 1st team with some really encouraging performances from the schools. And to think the Easter festivals are still 2 weeks away! Its no wonder preseason starts in September.
With that said, most of you would have probably been kept up to date on your schools latest results but here at KZN10 we like to know whats happening in all the schools. So just to get everyone up to speed as to what has happened in the last month I’ll post a summary of the results of the KZN10 schools 1st teams.
9 March: Martizburg College
For the casual observer this may have come as a shock, but the Knights were organized, executed their game plan effectively and made the most of their opportunities.
21 March: Grey High School(Grey Festival)
23 March: Selborne College(Grey Festival)
An absolute heart breaker for the Knights as they lost in the last movement of the game. Credit must go to the Selborne kicker as he nailed a tricky conversion to win the game. Tough going Knights! See the sequence below.
Incidentally the player who scored the winning try for Selborne, Jarrod Taylor, is a awesome player who should be in the reckoning for a SA Schools cap. At the recent World Schools Festival he was simply outstanding.
04 March: Port Shepstone
09 March: Richards Bay
13 March: Amanzimtoti High School
16 March: Michaelhouse 2nd
An encouraging sign for Clifton is that on this day their lower age group A teams played the Michaelhouse B teams on stagger and won their matches fairly comfortably.
09 March: Hilton College
21 March: Framesby(Grey festival)
23 March: Grey High School(Grey Festival)
9 March: Glenwood
Glenwood Rugby Festival:
Piet Potgieter: 19-12
16 March: Hilton College
23 March: St Charles College
9 March: Westville
21 March: KES(Wynberg Rugby Festival)
Mar 23: San Isidro Rugby Club-Argentina(Wynberg Rugby Festival)
Mar 26: John McGlashan-New Zealand(World Schools Festival)
Highlights from the game, clip is about 10 minutes long
Mar29: Asia Pacific Dragons (World Schools Festival)
9 March: Northwood
23 March: Noord Kaap
16 March: St Charles College
23 March: Hilton College
St Charles College
16 March: Michaelhouse
9 March: DHS
16 March: Kearsney College
23 March: Michaelhouse
27 March: USA Schools XV
30 March: Italian All Stars
This weekend promises to be an action packed one with Glenwood hosting Maritzburg College on Dixons and DHS hosting Westville on Van Heerdens. Both DHS and Glenwood have made these compulsory fixtures for their boys so the atmosphere should be electric at both venues. For those that can’t make the Glenwood/Maritzburg College game it will be televised live on Supersport as part of their Premier Schools coverage, kick off is 13:55.
With the private schools still on holiday 3 of them will be heading down to the Kingswood 125th festival. There are some potentially good match ups for our KZN10 schools particularly against St Andrews College who will play both Hilton and Kearsney. Clifton round out the trio of schools and should have a stern test from Graeme College.
St Andrews had a good set of results at the Grey High Festival so we will definitely keep an eye out as to how our schools fair.
So if you are in and around the Durban go and support the boys.
Thats all from me till next time,