The Clifton cricket fixtures at Michaelhouse Saturday, February 5 have already been cancelled but at least the first team basketball under coach S’bu Cele are set for a 2pm start on the main indoor court at House.
The first team water polo match at House is scheduled for 12.10pm.
The Kearsney first team cricket match at Northwood looks in serious doubt of completion Saturday but the first team basketball clash set for 1 pm at Kearsney we hope is all set to take place.
All the basketball matches scheduled at Northwood have already been cancelled.
The Kearsney first water polo side are at the St David’s festival in Johannesburg.
The Kearsney first side are scheduled to play Northwood firsts on 15 February, a Tuesday, at 4pm in Durban North.
Meanwhile, DHS first XI beat Glenwood by 5 wickets in the 100-Ball Coastal competition on Tuesday, Glenwood totalling 147/4 to which School replied with 151/5.
Westville hosting DHS on the cricket field look in serious weather-doubt while the basketball firsts were scheduled for a 5pm start Friday at Westville . The basketball was scheduled for Thursday at 5pm (first team). No result, as yet.
The Clifton School first XI under the leadership of captain Ross Montgomery and coach Brandon Scullard are at the Robin Smith Oval this Saturday 29 January for the 9am starting time 50-over match against hosts Northwood.
Clifton vs Northwood: Ben McElligott, Camden Riley, Mitchell Tillard, Keaton Murray, Matthew Gore, Mohamed Taqvi, Ross Montgomery (capt), Tristan Naicker, Ryan Jairaj, Dario Reddy, Nathan Armitage-Graves. Coach: Brandon Scullard
Photo caption: The Captain’s Blazer tradition at Clifton has been updated and handed on with Ross Montgomery the new incumbent.
In the last 7 first XI matches between the near-neighbours Clifton have won 4 and Northwood 2 with 1 match abandoned.
Northwood first XI to play Clifton: Evan Fouche, Muhammad Karodia, James Nielsen, Bradley Bumberry, Adam Chislett (capt), Matthew Anderssen, Ethan Grace, Jason Pearce, Reinhardt Nel, plus 2 players still to be confirmed. Coach: Khalipha Cele
So far this year Clifton have played 6 matches won 3 lost 2 and had one match abandoned. And the matches have either been decisively won or lost, a trend that seems prevalent among the schools this year.
For info on the Northwood first XI year so far go to
Clifton: at the Kearsney festival earlier this month:
10 Jan vs Futura Academy: no play possible due to weather.
11 Jan vs Michaelhouse: Clifton 253/8 and Michaelhouse 109 all out leaving Clifton 144-run winners.
12 Jan vs KZN Coastal Invitational XI: Clifton 270 all out beat Coastal 140 all out by 130 runs.
13 Jan vs Kearsney: lost by 5 wickets in Kearsney reaching 130 for 5 chasing Clifton’s 129 all out.
At Durban High School on 22 Jan:
Clifton 235 for 8 in 50 overs (McElligott 31, Montgomery 30, Riley 35, Naicker 39, Jairaj 39) DHS 59 all out (Jairaj 3-22, Armitage-Graves 4 for 1 (including a memorable hat-trick))
Clifton won by 176 runs.
Around end-September 2020 would have seen the 61st edition of Maritzburg College’s stellar Oppenheimer Michaelmas Cricket Week… but it was not to be. These annual four days of cricket, glorious schoolboy first XI cricket, have been etched into my sporting heart for so long it felt almost like a bereavement at the time.
Feature photo: Some of the Oppenheimer Michaelmas Cricket Week’s most distinguished alumni. See how many you can identify and then attach them to their schools.
Yes, there are far more important things in life, yet at the same time one must not minimise the impact of the special things that make the trials and tribulations of life (almost) bearable.
As a reminder of what we have taken for granted – until last year- here is a look at the KZN10.com first XI line-ups that represented our province’s premier cricket schools at the 2017 OMCW.
Let’s not worry about scores etc. Let’s just reflect on names and the personal and collective cricket memories they conjure up.
Maybe you’d like to share some of them?
2017 KZN first XI’s at the 58th Oppenhemer Michaelmas Cricket Week
Hosts Maritzburg College first XI
Scott Steenkamp (capt), Damian Walden, Brad Sherwood, Matt Crampton, Michael Horan, Brynley Noble, Andre Bradford, Jayden Gengan, Cameron Holloway, Jared Campbell, Dean Dyer, Keagan Collyer. Staff: Dave and Elmarie Pryke
Clifton College first XI
William Masojada (capt?), Scott Quinn, Matthew Montgomery, Joshua Brown, Luke Shave, Simon Holmes, Ariq Chetty, Daniel Freitag, Daniel Elgar, Connor Veitch, Jason Groves, Muhammad Noorbhai, James Feuilharde. Staff: Matt Savage, Yash Ebrahim, Oliver Cash
Kearsney College first XI
Blaise Carmichael, Patrick McGrath, Rory Bloy, Luke de Vlieg (capt), Robbie Koenig, Steven Conway, Michael Brokensha, Marco Gouviea, Carl Heunis, Jared Brien, Jethro Strydom, Bradley Beaumont. Staff: Hubert von Ellewee, Jonathan Beaumont
Michaelhouse first XI
Sean Gilson (capt), Tom Price, William Glassock, William Norton, Thomas Trotter, Fraser Jones, Nathan Wesson, Michael Brownlee, Liam England, Declan Newton, Gift Mokoena, Cameron Leer, Michael Meneer. Staff: Dean Forword, Jason Wulfsohn
Northwood first XI
Slater Capell (capt?), Ali Hamid, Jordan Edy, Andile Mogagane, Daniel Zvidzui, Alvin Chiradza, Samkelo Gasa, Wander Mtolo, Jeremy Martins, Mpumelelo Xulu, Luke Stevens, Cameron Ciaglia, Nicolas Deeb. Staff: Divan van Wyk, Riaan Minnie
Hilton College first XI
Robbie McGaw, James Ritchie, Michael Sclanders, Gareth Schreuder, Chris Meyer, Brandon McMullen (capt), Michael Booth, Alistair Frost, Jared Venter, Alex Roy, Mike Frost, Kamogelo Selane, William Haynes. Staff: Dale Benkenstein, Sean Carlisle
DHS first XI
Safwaan Barradeen, Kribashan Naidoo, Liam Green, Martin Mugoni, Sumiran Ramlakkan, Jordan Bryan, Joshua Stride (capt?), Brayden Sambhu, Sinolin Pather, Taine Owen, Tawanda Zimhindo, Rodney Mapfudza. Staff: Oss Gcilitshana, Florian Genade
Glenwood first XI
Daelen Fynn (capt?), Jared Paul, Thamsanqa Khumalo, Cameron Reid, Caleb Alexander, Joe Jonas, Nikhil Prem, Hayden Rossouw, Alex Pillay, Khwezi Gumede, Jaden Hendrikse, Nathan Archibald. Staff: Jarryd Chetty, Brandon Scullard, Bevon Futter
Westville first XI
Carl Jairaj (capt), Matthew Pollard, Sam Gervasoni, Josh Brady, Josh Parker, Caleb Pillay, Brandon McCabe, Hayden Bowman, Jaryd Cook, Bonga Chepkonga, Keshlan Govender, Jandre Viljoen, Mazwi Meyiwa, Jarred Oosthuizen. Staff: Fabian Lazarus, Thomas Jackson, Chester Comins
* Not sure if all the captains are correct. Please advise. Thanks
29 May 2020 – Matt Lewis was a standout, highly skilled, all-round performer for Clifton in 2018 when the school went through the hockey season unbeaten before losing their very last game of the season, which he missed through injury. His contributions on the field throughout his Clifton career were eye-catching and memorable, leaving many predicting a bright hockey future for him. That future, however, is not in South Africa, writes KZN10.com’s Brad Morgan.
In 2019, Matt and his family moved to Australia with one of the primary reasons being to give him a chance to pursue his hockey dream.
Thoughts of moving Down Under started in 2016 when he went to Brisbane for a school exchange. “I just loved the country and the quality of hockey that they play at and I thought that’s it, we have to move here,” he said.
With his father, Terry, being an Australian citizen, and Matt a truly gifted hockey player, the family began to look into the possibility of the move. But grade 12 had to be dealt with first. “I wanted to finish school first as I felt matric was an important part of my life and I was extremely close with my friends,” Matt said.
“In 2019, the move began to Australia and my family is loving it here. My mom and I have just recently become permanent residents, which is awesome to have as there are so many benefits from it, and it gives us a sense of belonging here.”
Matt, who attended Clifton from grade R to matric, began playing hockey at the age of six at Riverside Hockey Club. It was the nature of team sport that captured his heart and a burning desire to win. “I have not looked back since,” he reckoned.
The foundation he received at Clifton was integral to his development, he said, citing very strong coaching from experienced coaches, which is “exactly what players want”. There was also a very important lesson to always be humble in striving for achievements.
At Clifton, Matt played in the first team from 2015 to 2018 and earned selection for the KZN Coastal and South African under-16 A teams in 2015 and 2016 and the KZN Coastal under-18 A side in 2018, when he was also chosen for the SA Schools B Team.
Missing from the above is 2017. That’s because Matt suffered a knee injury that needed surgery. It had been tough, but he wasn’t concerned that he would no longer be able to perform to the best of his ability. “I was more excited than ever to get back into hockey in 2018, I had absolutely no worry about my knee going into 2018 as I had done all the right rehab that would allow me to be 100 percent,” he said.
Inspirational captain leads Clifton basketball’s rise
Matt received the Hockey Player of the Year award from Clifton in 2018.
Blessed with good finishers and a gritty defence, Clifton put together a superb season under the guidance of coach Keegan Pearce, who Matt credited for helping him take his game to the next level.
They played 24 matches, won 20 of them, drew three and lost only their last game, when they had to play without goal scoring aces Matt and striker Declan Bradfield.
“The loss to Michaelhouse was a tough one to watch from the side line as I ruptured my ATFL ligament in an ankle,” Matt recalled.
But there were many highlights as the Clifton first team put up almost four goals a game on average, while conceding just less than one. Interestingly, during the season they played five schools twice – Saint Alban’s College, Uplands College, Saint Stithian’s College, Saint Andrew’s School, and Saint David’s Marist Inanda – and in every case won by a better margin the second time around, which showed progress and the ability to learn lessons from previous encounters.
Their three draws came against Cape Town powerhouse Bishops Diocesan College (1-1), a loaded Maritzburg College team (1-1) and Saint John’s College (2-2).
Maritzburg College, as a long-standing national power, was always a game that brought the Clifton team extra motivation, said Matt. So a 1-1 draw in Pietermaritzburg was a good result. Saint Charles, which has a lot in common with Clifton, was another game that the team always got themselves up for, he added, while Northwood and the Durban north derby was also a big one.
“My most memorable match of 2018 would probably have to be the 2-1 win against Northwood as they had a good side and I had a lot of mates in their team, so it was nice to get one over them.”
In May 2018, he was interviewed by KZN10.com’s Jono Cook, with whom he shared one of his goals: “Winning gold at [the under-18] IPT is another goal on my mind as I feel we, as KZN Coastal, have a very strong team to do so.”
In a tournament that underlined the strength of hockey in the province, the final came down to a showdown between KZN Coastal and KZN Inland, with Coastal coming away with the win. Mission accomplished, goal achieved.
A tale of two teams: the victorious KZN Coastal team celebrates after defeating their rivals, KZN Inland, in the final of the Under-18 Interprovincial Tournament in Pietermaritzburg in 2018.
His most memorable match ever with Clifton, he revealed, had taken place in 2016 on an overseas tour of the Netherlands and Belgium, two of the leading hockey-playing nations in the world. There, Clifton made the final of an under-18 tournament, where they faced the Polish national team in a game which they lost after a penalty shootout. “I had never seen so many people watching the game. It was just unreal,” he said.
In matric, Matt was selected to represent South Africa in the Africa Youth Games, which was another highlight in a career that had already included many.
Clifton recognised Matt Lewis’ achievements in hockey when he shared the 2018 Sportsman of the Year Award with William Dowsett and Todd Howard, who represented South Africa in waterpolo.
“I was extremely fortunate enough to go to a school like Clifton and I encourage every boy at Clifton to make the most out of it and wear the badge proudly,” he said in a message for the Clifton family.
With matric completed, the Lewis family made the move to Perth, Western Australia, which is a hot bed of Australian hockey. Matt explained: “The hockey system in Australia is just on another level and it shows in the results that the Kookaburras [men’s national team] and Hockeyroos [women’s national team] have achieved over the years.
Indeed, the Kookaburras have long been one of the world’s great teams, compiling a superb record that includes being the three-time World Cup winners, one-time Olympic champs, three-time World League winners, champions of the Pro League last year, and 15-time winners of the Champions Trophy.
“All the men’s and women’s national players live in Perth, so that they can train together. This means that the clubs will receive national players based on how many draft picks they have. This allows the competition to be extremely strong as you play against some of the best players in the world every weekend.
“The school boy level in KZN is stronger than here because all the hockey is played at club level here.”
The standard of play that Matt Lewis is facing in Australia is reflected in this photo of him in action for Hale Hockey Club: Matt is in possession, about to take a shot, and the man on the right is Matt Swann, who is closing in on 200 caps for Australia.
The fact that the move to Perth, which is known for having a large community of South Africa expats, went smoothly was a great help. “I knew only a handful of people coming over, but my dad knew loads of people who were his mates from school. I can’t thank them enough for making our move so easy.”
A smooth transition was also aided by former South African goalie Dave Staniforth and Jamie Dwyer, who knew about the Lewis family’s move and Matt’s hockey prowess. Not bad when one of the greatest to ever play the game is there to help.
Matt plays for Hale Hockey Club, which is coached by Staniforth. Last year, they made it to the league final where they were beaten by WASPS Hockey Club. In 2019, he was also selected to play for the Western Australia under-21 team that finished third in the Inter-state Championships. Sadly, those have been called off this season.
Another big feather in Matt’s cap was receiving an invitation to train at the Western Australian Institute of Sport where he got to spend time playing, training and conditioning with some of Australia’s best juniors.
Matt’s currently doing a Bachelor of Finance degree at Edith Cowan University, with his studies and hockey being his main focuses.
He has set his hockey aim high: “My long term goal is to one day play for the Kookaburras. It would be a dream come true as it has been a goal of mine for some time now.”
Matt Lewis on the run, taking the game to the opposition.
CLIFTON 1ST XI 2018
Clifton 7-1 Thomas More College
Clifton 9-1 Fourways High School
Clifton 6-1 DHS
Clifton 5-1 Saint Alban’s
Clifton 1-1 Bishops Diocesan College
Clifton 4-1 Uplands College
Clifton 3-2 Saint David’s Marist Inanda
Clifton 5-0 Saint Stithian’s College
Clifton 2-2 Saint John’s College
Clifton 5-0 Uplands College
Clifton 3-1 Nelspruit
Clifton 4-2 Saint Andrew’s School
Clifton 3-0 Saint Alban’s
Clifton 7-1 Trinity House
Clifton 2-0 Crawford College La Lucia
Clifton 4-1 Saint Charles College
Clifton 3-0 Glenwood
Clifton 2-1 Northwood
Clifton 1-1 Maritzburg College
Clifton 5-1 Saint Andrew’s School
Clifton 7-1 Saint Stithian’s College
Clifton 1-0 Helpmekaar
Clifton 3-1 Saint David’s Marist Inanda
Clifton 1-2 Michaelhouse
Played 24, won 20, drew 3, lost 1, goals for 93, goals against 22
The history of sport at Clifton College is remarkable, especially when one considers that the school is only 18 years of age. Most of its sport is played at an elite level, like cricket, waterpolo, tennis and hockey. But basketball? With their performances at the prestigious Saint John’s Basketball Festival this past weekend, Clifton’s basketball players proved they can, no doubt, compete at an elite level, writes KZN10.com’s Brad Morgan.
The team, led by their inspirational captain Jacques Mahanga, put together a string of eye-catching performances in the toughest pool of the event. They opened with a 32-29 victory over Saint Alban’s College, an established power in the game, showing character to score a late equaliser to force overtime before earning a sweet victory in the extra period.
Clifton’s pool, the toughest of the lot, included the hosts, Saint John’s College. (Photo: Saint John’s basketball, https://www.stjohnscollege.co.za/basketball/)
They downed a much-improved Enjabulweni School 25-13 in their second outing and followed that up with a 28-23 win over Cape Town’s Wynberg Boys High, a team that hadn’t encountered before.
What made Clifton’s pool the toughest of all, though, was their next two opponents, Saint John’s College and Michaelhouse, the sides who ended up battling it out in the final for the title.
In a very physical contest, they went down 24-36 to Saint John’s before coming out on the wrong side of a very tightly-contested game against the eventual champions, Michaelhouse, by a slim 35-37 margin.
That final outing against a side that won the Stayers Tournament at Kearsney College and now the Saint John’s title, was a great advertisement for the game, said Master in Charge of Basketball at Clifton, Peter Farquharson.
Clifton defeated Wynberg Boys High, an unfamiliar foe, at the Saint John’s Basketball Tournament. (Photo: Saint John’s Basketball https://www.stjohnscollege.co.za/basketball/)
“What I really liked about that game was it was a game played in a beautiful spirit. The boys all know each other, they’ve played against each other, they’re friends with each other and on the court it was a great game of basketball.”
“The concept of mutual respect in a game like basketball is definitely there. The Clifton and Michaelhouse boys have also played in teams together, so those relationships are established. While it was competitive, it was played in the right spirit.”
As for the result, Clifton’s captain Jacques Mahanga wasn’t surprised that he and his team-mates had pushed a team that is arguably the best in the country all the way.
“We left our hearts on the court. We fought very hard. We weren’t shocked. We were all in the right head space. We all wanted to win, we wanted to beat Michaelhouse. We’ve had enough of Michaelhouse,” he laughed. “We saw an opportunity to beat them, but we were a little unlucky to go down by two.”
Clifton even had two opportunities to win the clash with buzzer beaters, but those shots didn’t fall. Nonetheless, the game showed Clifton belongs among the elite, and their other performances in the pool games backed that up.
With only five league fixtures taking place outside of tournaments during the first term, the Saint John’s Tournament was an opportunity to grow for the Durban school and, said their skipper, he believes they did.
“We certainly grew from the first game to the last. Funnily enough, in our first game against Saint Alban’s, we wouldn’t have won the game if one of our juniors did not score the last basket to send the game into overtime. The juniors helped us win. It was an opportunity for the seniors to praise the juniors for their role in the team.”
He added: “We didn’t have to tell other teams how good we have become. Our performances spoke for us. We performed better than we had against other KZN schools earlier in the season. Kearsney, for example, beat us in the season. They have always finished higher than us, but they didn’t make it past the group stages.”
Photographed outside Founder’s House at Clifton College, first team basketball captain Jacques Mahanga and Master in Charge of Basketball Peter Farquharson (Photo: Brad Morgan, KZN10.com)
Mahanga, who has KZN under-19 colours in the sport, is the heart and soul of the Clifton basketball team, Peter Farquharson said: “He’s very humble. In any game, he is, by far, our top points’ scorer. But he has certainly worked hard on playing a team structure and adding to the strengths of our team. Teams change from year to year, and we have had to adapt things at times, but he has definitely been a strong team player.
“Jacques works hard, he trains hard, and he is disciplined. He has been a good leader. He’s worked closely with some of the juniors, which is really good to see.”
Mahanga’s leadership is plain to see in the manner in which he carries himself. He is confident, but respectful, open, honest, and a smile comes easily to his face.
He plays either point guard or shooting guard and his NBA heroes reflect the qualities he admires and strives to emulate: Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors, the best shooter in the game; the recently-deceased Kobe Bryant, known for his fighter’s mentality; and Le Bron James, the do-everything Los Angeles Lakers superstar who, like Jacques, rose from humble beginnings, which the Clifton skipper likens to his own story.
He attended Addington Primary School, not a traditional feeder school for Clifton, but Jacques was the recipient of the Gail Teunissen Legacy Scholarship, given annually to a boy from Addington, who is the best all-round learner.
“I was lucky to get that,” he said. “I was competing with three other candidates and they were all very good.”
When he arrived at Clifton in grade eight, he had a slight edge over many of the other boys in that he had started playing basketball at Addington. It wasn’t so much about the sport as it was about friendship, he explained at Founders House on the Clifton campus on Tuesday.
“What really pushed me to play basketball was the fact that I saw all my friends playing basketball. We all played soccer and then they left to play basketball and I was the only one left playing soccer, so I decided to move to basketball too.”
Disarmingly candid, he described himself as being “very cocky” when he moved to Clifton. He wanted to play first team basketball in grade eight and by the fourth term he had achieved that goal.
This past season, Jacques was the senior player in the team, along with only four other matric boys, and that meant he played the role of mentor to some of the younger boys, in a reversal of the roles from when he first represented the Clifton first team.
Clifton’s 28-23 victory against Wynberg Boys High gave them three wins on the trot in the Saint John’s Basketball Tournament pool stage. (Photo: Saint John’s Basketball https://www.stjohnscollege.co.za/basketball/)
When basketball was introduced at the school there was only one team per age group and games were played in the school hall. As its popularity began to grow two external courts were added. Recently three brand new courts were put up at the Riverside Sports Club, where so much of the school’s sport is played, bringing to five the number of courts it boasts and reflecting the growing popularity of the sport. That growth is happening in other schools, too, said Peter Farquharson.
Farquharson, who has been in charge of basketball at the school “for six or seven years”, said it has been an interesting journey thus far to grow the standard of play at Clifton.
He explained: “There are two things that have held Clifton basketball back. One is the size of the pool that we draw players from. The second thing is overcoming the perception that basketball is for those people who can’t play cricket, swim, or play waterpolo. I think we’re getting past that now.”
Clifton’s success in the Saint John’s Tournament was far from an overnight achievement, he added: “This year has been the culmination of a number of years of work. We’ve had nice stable structures in place in terms of coaching. It’s difficult to find coaches, because there are very few teachers who are coaches. You have to look externally for coaches. We’ve had a relatively stable structure and there are a couple of other things.
The team that performed so well in the Saint John’s Basketball Tournament before their departure for Johannesburg (Photo: Peter Farquharson)
“We’ve gone from one team per age group to four. From attending one tournament per year, we now attend five altogether. The under-14s go to Saint Andrew’s College, the under-16s were at Michaelhouse and Saint Stithian’s, the open team was at Saint John’s, and at the end of the year we’ll send the Stayers to Kearsney.”
The willingness to travel to play top teams in almost any sport anywhere in the country has been one of the prime drivers of sporting success at Clifton, helping the school to ascend at a rapid rate unlike anything seen from other schools of a comparable age.
Something else that has been of benefit to basketball at the school was the formation of Cobweb, an old boys/school boys club, which has entered a team in the Ethekweni Basketball League for the past two years. “A couple of the boys, like Jacques, play in that league. That means they’re getting exposed to the sport throughout the year. They’re playing at a tough level against men’s teams,” Farquharson said.
Mahanga admitted, though, that not all his goals had been achieved: “Last year, in the prefect’s application form, they asked everyone their goals for 2020 and my goal was to help make Clifton a top 10 team in South Africa. The only way to do that is by winning games.
“Unfortunately, this season we lost a lot of league games. In the Kearsney tournament, we came 10th, and in the Saint John’s tournament our goal was to make it to the quarter-finals. We were unfortunate to lose by three points against Michael Mount. They won the Saint John’s tournament two years ago.”
The point, though, is if you don’t attain your goal, you can still enjoy success.
“We played hard. We had the toughest pool. The two games we lost were to the finalists. We still made it out of the pool and we were unlucky not to make it into the quarters. I am sure that every coach out there is aware that Clifton basketball is rising,” Mahanga reckoned.
Like so many things at Clifton, where the idea of family is preached and lived, success comes from a holistic approach to all things. Peter Farquharson concluded: “There is an incredibly committed staff. The parental support is behind every endeavour at the school. Whether it’s the Chamber Choir or basketball, parental support is crucial, and it is there.”
Michaelhouse, Kearsney and Saint Charles remain steady powers at the top of KwaZulu-Natal schools’ basketball. Not long ago, DHS was the best in the country. Hilton College is strong, Maritzburg College is strong, Northwood is on the up, and Clifton now appears to have taken a seat at that table. The trick will be to sustain that success, but given their past record in other sports, why would one bet against them?
Day four of the Independent Schools Cricket Festival began under cloudy skies, with drizzle threatening to turn into something heavier and spoil the final day of the event. However, with a bit of venue juggling, seven T20 matches were played and at the conclusion of the day, Hilton College, Bishops and Saint Andrew’s College were left with unblemished records writes KZN10.com’s Brad Morgan.
“One always wants to achieve the best for all teams that commit to the festival in terms of game time,” Festival Director Wayne Scott commented after the last match. “We got through 19 of our 24 games for the weekend, which was fantastic.
Festival Director Wayne Scott (foreground, blue top) discusses the game as Clifton battle Saint Andrew’s College of Grahamstown.
“From a logistics perspective, to try and coordinate a festival around Durban, when you need six grounds and you don’t have fields of your own, creates its own challenges, so hats off to all my staff and all the logistics people involved.”
HILTON COLLEGE VS MICHAELHOUSE
A big traditional rivalry was scheduled for Durban North College, but a waterlogged field led to Hilton and Michaelhouse moving to College Rovers. The break and new venue proved to be no problem for Hilton who powered their way to a lopsided nine-wicket win in double-quick time.
Brett Cutting shone with the ball for Hilton, capturing 3 for 8 in his four overs, as Michaelhouse, batting first, crashed to a lowly 64 all out.
In reply, the black and white rushed to victory in just 11 overs, led by Matt Diemont. He enjoyed a consistent festival with the bat and ended it on a high with an unbeaten 39.
BISHOPS VS SAINT DAVID’S MARIST INANDA
Bishops had the most reliable top order over the course of the four days and they again came to the fore in a comfortable eight-wicket win over Saint David’s Marist Inanda on the Kingsmead Nursery ground.
Saint David’s batting aspirations were pegged back by losing wickets at regular intervals. Instead they managed an average 116 for 7 in their 20 overs.
James Fifield stood firm with 30 not out for the Gauteng school, while Storm Matthews led the Cape Town school’s attack with a good-looking return of 4 for 17 from his four overs.
Bishops then needed only 16 overs to pass the victory target of 118, getting there for the loss of just two batsmen, with Abdullah Adams contributing 37.
SAINT ANDREW’S COLLEGE VS SAINT JOHN’S COLLEGE
Saint Andrew’s College played two matches, the first against Saint John’s and the second against Clifton, which brought the Festival to a close. Like Bishops, they showed strong depth in their batting.
Playing on the Riverside Football Field first up meant short boundaries square of the wicket and the Grahamstown side took full advantage of that to put up a challenging 181 for 6, with Matt Poole’s 82 proving to be the highest score in any game on the last day. Christopher Ford was the most successful of the Saint John’s bowlers, claiming three wickets, but he was also expensive, going for 49 runs.
Saint Andrew’s College batted aggressively to post an intimidating 181 for 6. (All photos: Brad Morgan, KZN10.com)
The Johannesburgers were not up to the pressure of matching a required run rate of just over nine to the over and fell well short, finishing on 130 for 8, with Harry Grose striking 33. That left Saint Andrew’s the convincing victors by 51 runs.
CLIFTON VS SAINT JOHN’S COLLEGE
Later, on the Riverside Oval, they took on Clifton. The hosts had a very good festival, impressing in the field and with the ball especially, but they didn’t put enough runs on the board to stop the hard-hitting College boys.
Clifton’s Shrey Singh appeals successfully for LBW against Saint Andrew’s College.
Wade Vietch played a good innings to tally 50, but a total of 135 for 4 wasn’t enough to really pressure the Eastern Cape side. Clifton did well to get deep into their batting line-up but, with a couple of overs to spare, Saint Andrew’s College secured a three-wicket win.
CLIFTON VS SAINT STITHIAN’S COLLEGE
Clifton had begun the day with a well-deserved six-wicket victory over Saint Stithian’s. It was built off of a strong bowling performance, which limited Saints to only 105 for 7, with Josh Northend knocking over 3 for 13.
There was an enticing duel between bat and ball when Clifton visited the crease against Saint Stithian’s.
Opening batsman Ben McElligott then played a match-winning innings of 48 not out from 58 deliveries to see Clifton to a six-wicket win.
Assessing the host’s performances, Clifton Director of Cricket Wayne Scott said: “We were playing the best teams from around the country, which is awesome. We always want to play people from different provinces.
“The interesting thing was we had six teams from coastal regions, if we include Bishops and Saint Andrew’s Grahamstown, plus the four schools from KZN. Then we had six schools from inland – from Joburg, Pretoria and Bloemfontein.
“The primary objective for us is to have games against new schools, which we achieved.”
SAINT CHARLES COLLEGE VS SAINT ALBAN’S COLLEGE
Saint Charles, after some strong performances, came unstuck against Saint Alban’s on the Durban North College top field. Due to a muddy pitch, bowling was done entirely from the north end, so kudos to the coaches and players for making sure a game took place.
Saint Charles were out in the middle first. Despite short square boundaries, which made for inviting targets for the batsmen, they lost wickets regularly. It led to them posting 130 for 7, which was not as healthy a total as it might have seemed because of the small field.
Short square boundaries invited the Saint Charles’ batsmen to play shots…
Triston Venter struck 41 and Kwanele Nqayi made 30, but the Maritzburg side had trouble with the bowling of Cameron Walker and Luca Kirstein. Walker snapped up 3 for 16 in four overs, while Kirstein captured 3 for 10 in three.
…which backfired at times.
It was tight, but Saint Alban’s got home with eight balls to spare, reaching 135 for 6 in the penultimate over. Their victory owed much to Boago Gaoraelwe whose 67 was crucial to the positive result for the Pretoria boys.
SAINT ANDREW’S SCHOOL VS SAINT BENEDICT’S
A young Saint Andrew’s School side had battled throughout the festival with their batting and against Saint Benedict’s it was again their undoing. Batting first, the Bloemfontein team scraped together only 71 for 9 in their 20 overs. Even though conditions were a little tricky, that was never going to be enough to challenge Saint Benedict’s.
JC Young of Saint Andrew’s goes on the drive against Saint Benedict’s.
Tristan Eley made sure Bennies cruised to the win with an unbeaten 39, which gave them a comfortable eight-wicket margin of victory.
Summing up the four days of the event, Festival Director Wayne Scott said: “From my side, we had a wonderful week of cricket. Lots of new friendships were formed and lots of new bonds were forged, in terms of players playing against each other and coaches getting to know each other.
“It’s all about playing the game in the right spirit, and I think most games were played that way.
“Everyone wants to win but, for me, the awesome thing about the week was that lots of teams got to play against sides that they don’t normally play against.
Michaelhouse 64 all out (B. Cutting 3 for 8)
Hilton College 65 for 1 off 11 overs (M. Diemont 39*)
Hilton won by 9 wickets
Saint Andrew’s College 181 for 6 (M. Poole 82, C. Ford 3 for 49)
Saint John’s College 130 for 8 (H. Grose 33)
Saint Andrew’s College won by 51 runs
Clifton 135 for 4 (W. Vietch 50)
Saint Andrew’s College 137 for 7
Saint Andrew’s College won by 3 wickets
Saint David’s Marist Inanda 116 for 7 (J. Fifield 30*, S. Matthews 4 for 17)
Bishops 117 for 2 off 16 overs (A. Adams 37)
Bishops won by 8 wickets
Saint Stithian’s College 105 for 7 (J. Northend 3 for 13)
Clifton 108 for 4 (B. McElligott 48*)
Clifton won by 6 wickets
Saint Charles College 130 for 7 (T. Venter 41, K. Nqayi 30, Luca Kirstein 3 for 10, C. Walker 3 for 16)
Saint Alban’s College 135 for 6 (B. Gaoraelwe 67)
Saint Alban’s College won by 4 wickets
Saint Andrew’s School 71 for 9
Saint Benedict’s 72 for 2 (T. Eley 39*)
Saint Benedict’s won by 8 wickets
Hilton College and Clifton eked out narrow victories, while Saint Charles powered their way to an emphatic win, on day two of the Independent Schools Under-15 Cricket Festival in Durban on Thursday. The conditions were overcast and windy – no bails were used – and threatened to rain out the games, but ultimately they brought only one contest to a premature end, writes KZN10.com’s Brad Morgan.
HILTON COLLEGE VS SAINT JOHN’S COLLEGE
At the Riverside Sports Club, Hilton College put up 189 for 9 in their 50 overs against Saint John’s College. On a turning wicket and with a heavy outfield, it was a decent total and Hilton were confident it would be enough. They were right, but only just.
The issue for Hilton was the fact that five of the top six batsmen in their order made their way into double figures, but none really pushed on to produce a telling contribution.
Ross Boast’s 31 was their best effort, closely followed by Matt Diemont, who made 30.
Oliver Xego sent three batsmen packing at a cost of 31 runs, while Thomas Archer captured 3 for 41 and Liam Billet took 2 for 39. Props, too, to Krishay Patel, who sent down 10 overs and finished with an economical 1 for 20.
Saint John’s had every opportunity to chase down the victory target of 190, but they were undone by their running between the wickets and Hilton’s fielding, with four players departing due to run outs.
Crucially, they included the top scorer in the match, Harry Grose, who made 50 from 75 deliveries, with five fours.
The run out of Harry Grose was a crucial moment in Hilton’s hard-fought win over Saint John’s (All photos: Brad Morgan, KZN10.com)
The two Lukes, Watt and Francis, both made it into the twenties, but were unable to provide the extra impetus, so badly undermined by run outs, that the Saint John’s innings needed. In the end they came up eight runs shy of the Hilton total, finishing on 181 for 9.
CLIFTON VS SAINT DAVID’S MARIST INANDA
Runs were hard to come by at Durban North College where the host school, Clifton, and Saint David’s Marist Inanda went hammer and tongs in a tense, but fairly contested match.
Having won the toss, Clifton chose to bat, but like so many matches on the day – was it the overcast conditions? – saw their batsmen make some starts but none push on to produce a decisive innings.
James Matthis, their top scorer on day one against Saint Alban’s with 71, was once more the leading run-getter, but this time his contribution was 29, taking him to 100 runs for the Festival thus far.
The big disappointment for Clifton would be that Matthis, together with Ben McElligott, put on 46 for the first wicket. Once McElligott departed for 22, Clifton lost the remainder of their wickets for just 99 runs.
Brandon Archer did most of the damage for Saint David’s, snapping up 4 for 31 from his 10 overs. He was well supported by Sohan Desai, who bowled six overs and picked up 3 for 16.
Clifton edged out Saint David’s Marist Inanda after an intense contest in which the ball had the better of the bat.
Caleb McLaren was the glue in the Johannesburg side’s response, making 63 not out, but the support he required was missing and Saint David’s came up 10 runs shy, losing their last wicket with the total on 135.
Clifton owed a lot to spinner Shrey Singh for their victory. His five-for at a cost of 42 runs proved just too much for Saint David’s to overcome.
SAINT CHARLES COLLEGE VS SAINT ANDREW’S SCHOOL
At Collegians, Saint Charles enjoyed a convincing 104-run victory over Saint Andrew’s School. It was far from a vintage batting performance from the Pietermaritzburg side, but they had enough contributions, aided by 26 extras, to muster 217 in 38.4 overs.
Joao de Franca nudged out Matt Urquhart for the top score, making 44 with six fours, while Urquhart sent the ball across the boundary nine times in his innings of 43, which came in double-quick time from just 28 deliveries.
Ross Ritchie produced a telling knock, making 37, while Panashe Taruvinga hit 24.
Jordan van den Berg led the Saint Andrew’s bowlers with a return of 3 for 39, but was a little expensive, going at 6.5 runs per over. Ishaq Khan snapped up 2 for 12 in four, while Schalk Liebenberg was arguably the pick of the Bloemfontein school’s bowlers, capturing 2 for 31 in his 10 overs.
Saint Andrew’s then did themselves no favours when they visited the crease with both openers being run out. Just two players reached double figures as the batting side crumbled under heavy pressure from the Saint Charles’ bowlers and fielders.
Jordan Bentley was the star of the show, knocking over 3 for 13 in 10 overs, while the rest of the wickets were shared around.
The top scorer for Saint Andrew’s School against Saint Charles was middle order batsman Matthew Simon.
Matthew Simon hit 34 at close to a run a ball for Saint Andrew’s and Schalk Liebenberg occupied the crease for a long time for his 25 from 96 deliveries, but with no other meaningful support they were well beaten by Saint Charles.
MICHAELHOUSE VS SAINT BENEDICT’S
Michaelhouse faced Saint Benedict’s at Lahee Park in Pinetown, but they, unfortunately, on a day when rain threatened throughout, were the only teams to have their game rained out. There was a lot of cricket played, nonetheless.
The Balgowan boys mustered 158 in their 50 overs, thanks mostly to Michael Thornton and Nathan Hoatson. Thornton top scored with 52, while Hoatson shone with a knock of 47 runs.
Simele Maye stood out with the ball, with an economical and incisive return of 4 for 21.
The Saint Benedict’s innings then lasted 16 overs before the rain brought it to a close on 58 for 1.
BISHOPS VS SAINT ALBAN’S COLLEGE
In a high-scoring game, which bucked the trend, Bishops recorded a 39-run victory over Saint Alban’s at College Rovers, aided by an astonishing five run outs.
Batting first, after being put in, Bishops posted 289 for 8, which was highlighted by a second wicket stand of 157 between opening batsman Kashief Josephand number three Nic Allison.
Joseph was the first to depart, just nine runs shy of a century, having taken only 115 balls for his 91, with 10 fours and two sixes.
As so often happens when a big stand is broken, the second of the partners sooned joined the other back on the side of the field, with Allison falling just four runs later for 64, with five fours and one maximum.
Abdullah Adams weighed in with a rapid 36 and the middle order all reached double figures without pushing on to anything significant. Still, 289 was a decent total.
Sam Berry picked up three wickets for Saint Alban’s at a cost of 56 runs, while Luca Kirstein claimed 2 for 40 and Eldré Spies a tidy 2 for 36 from his 10 overs.
The Pretoria school’s response lasted 47.2 overs. There was some good batting, but those five run outs were too much to overcome.
Charl Barnard, the hero of their draw against Clifton on day one, was the top scorer once again, making 64 from 96 balls, with five fours, at the top of the order before being caught by Cole Crawford off of the bowling of Jack Crafford.
Stuart van der Merwe made 45 as he and Barnard put on 82 for the second wicket, while lower down the order, Druan Visagie, in at eight, took the attack to the bowlers, cracking an unbeaten 41 from just 35 balls, with five fours and a six. Unfortunately for him and for Saint Alban’s, he ran out of partners as they finished on 250 all out, 40 runs fewer than they required to win.
SAINT STITHIAN’S VS SAINT ANDREW’S COLLEGE
Saint Stithian’s, after a rough outing against Hilton on day one, performed better in their second match against Saint Andrew’s College, but were again on the wrong side of the result, going down by five wickets to the team from Grahamstown.
Richard Seletswane struck 50 for Saint Stithian’s, but good bowling from Hlonela Ntshingwa, who captured 3 for 16, and Stuart Carr, who took 3 for 35, made sure the batting side was unable to get any real momentum going. Still, they managed to make their way to 143 all out.
Saint Andrew’s College, without any one batsman going off, reeled in the Saint Stithian’s total in just 32.2 overs, led by an unbeaten 32 from Oliver Snart, for the loss of five wickets.
Hilton College 189 for 9 (R. Boast 31, M. Diemont 30, T. Archer 3 for 41, O. Xego 3 for 31)
Saint John’s College 181 for 9 (H. Grose 50)
Hilton won by eight runs
Clifton 145 all out (J. Matthis 30)
Saint David’s Marist Inanda 135 all out (C. McLaren 63*, S. Singh 5 for 42)
Clifton won by 10 runs
Saint Charles College 217 all out (De Franca 44, Urquhart 43, Ritchie 37, Van den Berg 3 for 39)
Saint Andrew’s School 113 all out (M. Simon 34, J. Bentley 3 for 13)
Saint Charles won by 104 runs
Michaelhouse 158 all out (M. Thornton 52, N. Hoatson 47, Simele 4 for 21)
Saint Benedict’s 58 for 1 off 16 overs
Game abandoned due to rain
Bishops 289 for 8 (K. Joseph 91, C. Crawford 65)
Saint Alban’s College 250 all out
Bishops won by 39 all out
Saint Stithian’s College 143 all out (R. Seletswane 50, H. Ntshingwa 3 for 16, S. Carr 3 for 35)
Saint Andrew’s College 145 for 5 (O. Snart 32*)
Saint Andrew’s won by 5 wickets
For the teams that travelled from the central areas of South Africa, the opening day of the Independent Schools Under-15 Cricket Festival must have been a bit of a smack in the face; it was very hot and very humid in Durban and the outfields were playing slowly, meaning any time spent in the middle, be it with bat or ball, would be taxing.
KZN10.com’s Brad Morgan took in some intense competition, which resulted in wins for Hilton College, Michaelhouse, and Bishops, and strong draws for Clifton, Saint Charles and Saint Andrew’s College.
The format for the day was time cricket, with 50-overs matches set to follow on Thursday and Friday, and T20s on Saturday.
(Score summaries below)
CLIFTON vs SAINT ALBAN’S
At Riverside, the host school, Clifton, squared up to Saint Alban’s College of Pretoria. In the early going, it was the visitors who enjoyed the better of the contest, led by the Kirstein twins, seamer Luca and off-spinner Liam, who captured the first four wickets to fall as Clifton lurched to 42 for 4.
Connor McKenzie and James Matthis then lent the innings some substance by moving the total along to 71 before McKenzie was bowled by Liam Kirstein for 20. Ben van der Merwe (7) didn’t last too long, but that brought Kyle Thomas to the crease and he, together with James Matthis, then set about taking control of the battle between bat and ball.
The duo combined for a very well played partnership of 104 to put Clifton in the driving seat.
Thomas brought stability and watchfulness to the crease, refusing to play any risky shots, while Matthis took on the dominant role, impressing with his willingness to take on any full ball by driving straight and true over the top. In the end, his offensive mindset cost him his wicket, stumped off the bowling of Boago Gaoraelwe for a fine 71 from 107 deliveries, with 10 fours, but not before he had played a pivotal knock.
Clifton added a further 15 runs before declaring on 200 for 8 from 64.2 overs, with the left-hander, Kyle Thomas, unbeaten on 48, which had come from 88 balls and included five fours.
Liam Kirstein led the Saint Alban’s attack, snaring 5 for 64 in 19 overs with his spin, while his brother, Luca, picked up 2 for 28 in 7.2.
Charl Barnard’s bat stood between Clifton and a convincing victory. (All photos, Brad Morgan, KZN10.com)
In reply, the Pretoria school had opener Charl Barnard (above) to thank for not being run over by the Clifton attack. He played a nuggetty knock, which last all 54 overs of the Saint Alban’s reply, to finish on an undefeated 60 from 158 balls, with eight fours.
All around him, the Saint Alban’s batsmen struggled. Luke Sass managed 14, but his was the only other score to make it beyond single figures as the Clifton spinners tied up the opposition batsmen in knots.
Clifton’s Keaton Murray clean bowled Luca Kirstein for a single.
Barnard’s battling knock was rewarded, however, when Saint Alban’s gutted it out to reached 97 for 8 by stumps. Opening bowler Keaton Murray captured 2 for 8 for Clifton from nine overs, five of which were maidens, while his new ball partner, Mitchell Tillard, claimed 1 for 7 in seven.
It was the twin spin offensive from Huzaifah Badat and Shrey Singh, though, that caused all kinds of trouble for Saint Albans. Badat snared 3 for 25 in 15 overs, while Singh finished with 2 for 16 from his 12.
In the end, however, Barnard stood between Clifton and victory.
SAINT CHARLES VS SAINT DAVID’S MARIST INANDA
Saint Charles College faced Saint David’s Marist Inanda on the Kingsmead Nursery Ground and enjoyed themselves at the crease. Spending 65 overs out in the middle, they tallied a useful 271 for 8.
Matthew Urquhart top scored with 70 and there was plenty of meaningful support for his innings from Panashe Taruvinga, who made 42, Stefan Veldsman, with 40, and Joao de Franca with 30.
Saint David’s found the going a lot tougher in their turn at bat. In just 10 fewer overs than Saint Charles required to get their 271, the Johannesburgers scratched their way to 78 for 7, which was enough for them to hold out for a draw.
De Franca showed off his all-round ability as he added a bowling return of 3 for 13 off of 15 overs to go with his 30 with the bat, while Jordan Bentley knocked over 3 for 19 in 12.
MICHAELHOUSE VS SAINT ANDREW’S SCHOOL
Michaelhouse and Saint Andrew’s School met at College Rovers in a contest dominated by the ball. Batting first, a young Saints’ team lost a couple of early wickets, but were then settled by a stubborn innings of 34 by Jordan van den Berg. He stuck around for 98 balls and sent three deliveries to the boundary before falling victim to Nathan Hoatson for 34.
Letlo Likhi put together a dour 28 not out from 149 balls, with two fours, but not much else was offered by the Bloem boys, who were dismissed for 113 in 63 overs.
Nathan Hoatson was the pick of the Michaelhouse bowlers, returning the superb figures of 20 overs, 11 maidens, 3 for 15.
Graham Wynne snapped up 2 for 9 in four and Aiden Jinnah claimed 2 for 36 as the ‘House attack set their batsman a very gettable target.
Michaelhouse were forced to sweat for their runs and for victory by Saint Andrew’s School.
At 43 for 1 in reply, the Balgowan-based side was cruising along, but they then saw three wickets fall for just eight runs. Another flurry of wickets, which saw them reduced from 65 for 4 to 80 for 7 had Michaelhouse concerned. But, for the loss of just one more wicket, they edged across the finishing line to secure a narrow win by two wickets.
At the top of the order, Kyle Walker had played a crucial knock, making 32 from 60 balls, with four fours, while Murray Baker struck 23 at a run a ball, with four boundaries. Dakalo Leketa starred for Saint Andrew’s, picking up 3 for 24 in 15 overs.
HILTON COLLEGE VS SAINT STITHIAN’S
At Crusaders, Hilton College powered their way to a convincing victory over Saint Stithian’s.
Batting first, Saints mustered 136 all out, with Masande Luthuli leading the way with an innings of 38 runs.
Nick Chantier was the pick of the Hilton bowlers, sending three batsmen packing to return figures of 3 for 25.
It simply wasn’t enough runs and Hilton were ruthless in their pursuit of the win.
Wian Liebenberg did most of the damage, weighing in with 70, while Matt Diemont hit 40 to see the boys from the Midlands to an emphatic nine-wicket victory.
BISHOPS VS SAINT JOHN’S COLLEGE
Also at Crusaders, Bishops and Saint John’s met. The Johannesburg side has been a bit up and down this season, due mostly to inconsistent batting, scoring some good wins and suffering some disappointing losses, but a total of 196 all out looked like a reasonable score. It turns out if wasn’t nearly enough to stave off the Capetonians’ charge.
Storm Matthews shone for Bishops, striking an unbeaten 83, , which was the highest individual score achieved by any batsman on the day, and Abdullah Adams lent strong support with 68, to see the Cape Town school to an impressive five-wicket win.
SAINT ANDREW’S COLLEGE VS SAINT BENEDICT’S
At Collegians, Saint Andrew’s College were the only team to top 300, putting together 301 for 6 against Saint Benedict’s. Their innings didn’t have one very big score, but there was plenty of consistency from the batsmen.
Sibusiso Mxube top scored with 62 for the Grahamstown boys, Matthew Poole struck 60 not out, Matthew Beamish contributed 50, Bertram White 50, and Sinjhun Cawse an undefeated 34.
In reply, Saint Benedict’s put up 161 for 5 as the game petered out into a tame draw. Quaid Pillay returned the top score of 41 and Declan le Roux came close to matching him, making 35.
Clifton 200 for 8 (J. Matthis 71, B. van der Merwe 48, Liam Kirstein 5 for 64, Luca Kirstein 2 for 28)
Saint Alban’s 97 for 8 (C. Barnard 60*, H. Badat 3 for 25, K. Murray 2 for 8, S. Singh 2 for 16)
Saint Charles College 271 for 8 (M. Urquhart 70, P. Taruvinga 42, S. Veldsman 40*, J. de Franca 30)
Saint David’s Marist Inanda 78 for 7 (J. de Franca 3 for 13, J. Bentley 3 for 19)
Saint Stithian’s 136 all out (M. Luthuli 38, N. Chantier 3 for 25)
Hilton College 145 for 1 (W. Liebenberg 70, M. Diemont 40)
Hilton won by 9 wickets
Saint Andrew’s School 113 all out (J. van den Berg 34, L. Likhi 28*, N. Hoatson 3 for 15, G. Wynne 2 for 9)
Michaelhouse 114 for 8 (K. Walker 32, M. Baker 23, D. Leketa 3 for 24)
Michaelhouse won by 2 wickets
Saint John’s 196 all out
Bishops 201 for 5 (S. Matthews 83*, A. Adams 68)
Bishops won by 5 wickets
Saint Andrew’s College 301 for 6 (S. Mxube 62, M. Poole 60*, M. Beamish 50, B. White 50, S. Cawse 34*)
Saint Benedict’s 161 for 5 (Q. Pillay 41, D. le Roux 35)
DHS played host to the annual Durban and District Gala on Tuesday afternoon. The event – featuring DHS, Westville, Northwood, Glenwood, Clifton and Kearsney – consisted of the 4 x 50m relay in all strokes in the under-14, under-15, under-16, under-17 and under-19 age groups and culminated in the 5 x 50m freestyle ladder relay, writes KZN10.com’s Brad Morgan.
Contested late in the afternoon, a decently sized crowd took in some good competition in pleasant conditions, with the powerhouse Westville team, predictably, dominating proceedings. A total of 26 events were contested with the Griffins excelling and capturing the honours in 22 of the 26 relays.
While Westville ruled the roost in the Durban and Districts Gala, DHS shone in the under-15 age group, picking up wins in three of the five relays (All photos: Brad Morgan, KZN10.com)
They impressed with their depth, not only in the various strokes, but also throughout the various age groups. Westville also swept all relays in the under-14, under-16 and under-17 age groups.
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Clifton picked up a very impressive win in the under-19 freestyle relay, which, obviously, meant their time of 1:40.84 was the fastest recorded in any relay on the day. That was the only race Westville didn’t win in the senior age group.
The competition took place in ideal late afternoon conditions, with a nice crowd in attendance.
DHS were especially strong at under-15 level. In fact, they claimed three wins to Westville’s two, with the hosts giving the crowd plenty to cheer with victories in the backstroke, butterfly and medley relays, while Westville reigned supreme in the freestyle and breaststroke races.
A hallmark of the gala, which was very pleasing to witness, was the friendly nature of the competition. It echoed days gone by when winning was not all that mattered and the appreciation of challenging oneself and others was as important as the result itself.
So, well done to all the swimmers and the coaches (and moms and dads); besides the excellence of the performances, the good-natured racing stood out.
From the first event to the last, there was no doubt that Westville would claim the silverware as champions of the Durban and Districts Gala. DHS headmaster Tony Pinheiro presented the winner’s trophy to Westville captain Ian Brijlal.
1st: Westville 152 points
2nd: Clifton 107 points
3rd: DHS 90 points
4th T: Glenwood 69 points
4th T: Kearsney 69 points
6th: Northwood 57 points
The Clifton College first XI followed up last Thursday’s 4-wicket T20 win over home side Westville on Bowden’s with a 64-run victory in this past Saturday’s 50-over match.
“Clifton set the tone from the beginning,” says the Clifton coaching staff’s Oliver Cash.
All cricket photos by KZN10.com‘s BRAD MORGAN
The hard-hitting Josh Platford provided the early impetus with a typically belligerent 54 off just 33 balls that included 9 fours and 2 sixes in his hour at the crease.
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“A patient innings from Matt Adams meant he was the perfect partner for the attacking and big-hitting Josh Platford,” says coach Oliver Cash, who has been with the first XI for a number of years, primarily in the strength and conditioning role, which so ably complements the cricketing knowledge of the experienced Clifton first XI coach Yashin Ebrahim.
Adams and the attack-minded Clifton skipper Nabeel Jeewa (40 32b 3×4 2×6) complemented the first-wicket partnership with another productive stand for the third wicket.
Grade 10 talent Ross Montgomery – coming in at number 5 – weighed in with a 34 off 70 balls (2 fours).
“Our experienced captain Nabeel Jeewa and young Ross Montgomery were brilliant in making sure that flow continued to lunch and beyond,” says Cash.
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The 35 extras that included 21 wides and 2 no-balls (a “freebie” 23 runs that also provided the Clifton batters with 23 extra deliveries to face) did not help the Westville cause and Clifton’s innings closed on an imposing 267 for 7 in their allotted 50 overs.
“Mention must also be made of the fact that Westville all-rounder Troy Botha was absolutely brilliant in the field,” says Clifton’s Oliver Cash. “A couple more fielders like Troy makes me think that our score may have been a lot less.”
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Westville employed 7 bowlers in the Clifton innings and the most significant outcomes came from Anthony Dunford (7 overs 1 maiden conceding 28 runs and taking 2 wickets) and Jared Slaney (10-0-53-2) and a tidy 10-0-28-1 from opening bowler Troy Botha. Dylan Rae and Jaden Arumugam picked up a wicket apiece.
In their reply to Clifton’s total of 267, too many misplaced airborne shots resulting in 6 catches coupled with 3 run outs did little for the Westville run chase, albeit a run chase set at a more-than challenging (on KZN pitches) 5.3 an over.
Opening batsman Kyle Hammond made a brisk start to the Westville innings with 36 off 35 (3 fours) while first-wicket Callum Hayes (30 42b 2×4) and skipper Ethan Matkovich (35 49b 2×4) also contributed handily to keep the home side within sight of winning ways.
“I thought Clifton started very poorly in the Westville innings,” says Cash. “Energy was very low and our bowlers lacked intent. Westville got on top with some aggressive batting. Unfortunately, one or two silly run outs from them meant their run rate fell off towards the middle of their innings.”
A typically pugnacious Troy Botha – coming in at 7 – innings of 57 runs off 46 balls including 6 fours and 3 sixes injected further momentum into the Westville run chase but the total of 3 run outs, including 2 towards the end, saw the home team’s innings close with the score reading 203 all out in just 39.4 overs of the 50 granted them.
“Once again it was Troy Botha who stepped up to the plate for Westville,” says Cash. “Troy had a brilliant knock and almost took the game away from us, but once we took his wicket we smelt blood in the water and with the light fading we cracked on the accelerator and closed the game out.”
It’s easy to say in hindsight of course, and purely statistical conjecture (lies, damn lies and then there are statistics, they say) but those 62 unused deliveries – had they been utilised by the batsmen in search of the remaining 65 to win (remember the 3 ill-judged run outs) it may well have brought the respective innings totals closer together.
Aside from the 3 run outs, Clifton spinners Marco Mottura (8-0-42-2) and the in-form vice-captain John Munford (8-0-25-2) were the chief wicket-takers while opening bowler Ryan Jairaj, first-change Ross Montgomery and second-change Teague Ridgway each earned a wicket.
“Given the conditions and some player health issues, I am very proud of the Clifton lads,” added Cash.
WESTVILLE V CLIFTON SCORES IN BRIEF
Thursday T20: Westville 124/5 (John Munford 3-25) Clifton 125/4 (Josh Platford 31, Romashen Pillay 30)
Clifton won by 6 wickets
Saturday 50-over: Clifton 267/7 (Matt Adams 64, Josh Platford 54, Nabeel Jeewa 40, Ross Montgomery 34) Westville 203 all out in 39.4ov (Troy Botha 5, Kyle Hammond 36, Ethan Matkovich 35, Callum Hayes 30)
Clifton won by 64 runs
Other CC v WBHS results
2nd XI: Clifton 122 lost to WBHS 124/4 by 6 wkts
3rds: Clifton 90 lost to WBHS 91/2 by 8 wkts
U16A: Clifton 114 lost to WBHS 115/3 (Kistna 47) by 7 wkts
U15A: WBHS 74 (Murray 6-13) lost to Clifton 75/5 by 5 wkts
U14A: Clifton 114 (Miller 41, Kistna 5-22) lost to WBHS 115/2 (Kistna 48) by 8 wkts