Inter-city T20 Competition a shot in the arm for Inland cricket

2011-11-11 00:00

THE introduction of the KZN Inter-city T20 competition is a welcome shot in the arm for KZN Inland cricket.

The KZN Inland Cricket Union has been working towards the establishment and hosting of the Inter-city T20 tournament, and the anticipated success of the event should lead to it becoming a permanent fixture on the club calendar.

With the games being hosted at the Maritzburg and PMB Varsity ovals, the tournament will create an enjoyable atmosphere and fans can get to see the best clubs in the province do battle.

The clubs that will participate in an effort to determine the best Twenty20 club in KZN are Standard­, PMB Varsity, Midlands and Young Natalians (all Inland), and Chatsworth Sporting, Berea Rovers, Pinetown and DHS Rhythm (all Durban). Group I includes Natalians, Midlands, Sporting and DHS while Group II features Varsity, Standard, Pinetown and Rovers. The winners of Group I will play the Group II winners in the final on March 30 at the PMB Oval.

“The Inter-city T20 will be extremely beneficial for Inland club players and hopefully its introduction will eventually lead to 50-over matches between the Durban and PMB clubs,” Inland head coach Anton Roux told The Witness yesterday. “This Friday’s first round of T20 matches in PMB will be interesting and I will be looking at how the players do in those matches.”

KZN Inland have had a month’s break from provincial challenge competition and they will resume the national tournament from Thursday to Sunday at the PMB Oval when they host Eastern Province.

Roux said that Zingari all-rounder Rudi Hillerman, who played for Inland last season after a successful stint at South Western Districts, Varsity all-rounder Suhail Razzack and Zingari’s former Maritzburg College first XI captain and opening batsman Jarryd Walsh have been added to the Inland training squad, while Dolphins wicketkeeper-batsman Divan van Wyk will be available against EP.

“The Inland squad has been working hard and by the looks of things the batting and bowling have improved, but to what extent we will only know after facing EP,” Roux said.

Inland are last in the 14-team three-day competition and while Glen Addicott lies fourth in the batting averages there are no Inland players in the bowling averages, but after only two games and 11 to go, there is plenty of time to rectify that aberration. KZN Coastal are ninth, with Loots Bosman 16th in the three-day batting averages and no one in the bowling averages.

South Western Districts, coached by former Inland all-rounder Garry Hampson and captained by former Inland skipper Ross McMillan, lead the three-day competition with three wins from three outings. Old Hiltonian McMillan tops the bowling averages with 16 wickets at 10.8.

Inland are third-last in the coastal stream of the Twenty20 and have not played yet due to weather, but received two points each from the two matches due to the no results.

KZN Coastal are last after one match.

FIXTURES

Friday – Twenty20 (PMB Oval): Standard vs Rovers (4 pm), Young Natalians vs Chatsworth Sporting (7 pm). Varsity Oval: Varsity vs Pinetown (4 pm), Midlands vs DHS Rhythm (7 pm).

Sunday – KZN Inland Premier (50-over): Varsity vs Northern Districts (Varsity), Zingari vs Standard (Collegians), Lancashire vs Young Natalians (Woodlands), Northern Natal vs Midlands (postponed to January 21).

Inland Premier log (all played four unless stated­): 1 Standard and Zingari, 17 points, 3 Midlands (played 3) 13 pts, 4 Varsity 11 pts, 5 Lancs 7 pts, 6 Young Natalians and Northern Natal 2 pts, 8 Northern Districts (played 3) 0 pts.

RESULTS

Inland Premier (bye due to Dolphins game).

Coastal Premier: Collegians 172 (M. Mutch 36, C. Kent 60, B. Scullard 4-42). Rovers 175/7 (S. Simpson 59, C. Kent five for 46). Rovers won by three wickets.

Pinetown 141 (J. Bezuidenhout 46, D. Reddy 4-26). Sporting 24/0. Washed out.

Crusaders 329/7 (R. Minnie 38, M. Alexander 32, R. Hatting 116, D. Miller 72). Topham 164 (S. van der Westhuizen 39, K. Nagan 34, K. Hodnett 3-21). Saders won by 165 runs.

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