Kiwi school for cricket week

2012-09-18 00:00

THE wet weather of the last few days of last week caused the cancellation of the school cricket matches that were scheduled to usher in the new cricket season. Looking forward, the two cricket festivals in the Midlands that occur at the start of the September holidays each year, will take place in just under two weeks’ time.

Michaelmas Week is hosted by Maritzburg College. It will see nine matches on each of the four days starting on September 29 going through to October 2.

The area is fortunate in having pitches that are suitable to accommodate nine matches on each day. The Eston Country Club has become a favourite venue and this year the Pietermaritzburg Oval and has been made available again. The two Varsity ovals on the Pieter Booysen Sport’s grounds, Collegians and two grounds at each of College and St Charles, will also be used.

Westlake Boys High School from New Zealand will add an international flavour to the week, and four visiting sides from beyond the KZN borders will have the opportunity to play against the tourists as they have been included with the KZN sides. Traditionally the KZN sides play against the sides from outside the province.

The KZN sides that have been invited to join College are DHS, Glenwood, Hilton, St Charles — all of whom have been regular participants — a KZN Development XI, Northwood (for the first time in a number of years) and Clifton for the first time.

The visitors from Johannesburg are St Stithians, KES and St Davids; from Pretoria are Affies, St Albans and Pretoria Boys High. Grey College from Bloemfontein, Hudson Park from East London and St Andrews from Grahamstown complete the line-up.

The other festival is at Weston, which will be its 18th year, and here the format is two 20/20 matches on each of the first four days from 29 September until 3 October. The teams are awarded points for each game and the two with the most points after four days will contest the final on the last day. The other teams compete for places in the points table.

Weston are joined by Treverton, Raisethorpe, Carter and Howick from the Midlands, Vryheid and Pionier from Northern KZN and three teams from outside the province. Heron Bridge and Hans Moore are coming from Gauteng, and Stellenberg from the Western Cape.

In preparation for the festival, Weston played Treverton and the Midlands Pakistani Club two weeks ago. They had an easy 98-run win against Treverton and a narrow five-run win against the club side.

Next weekend there are a number of school matches and all will hope that the weather plays ball and they can get a full day’s cricket behind them.

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