Lots of school cricket at three tournaments

2013-09-21 00:00

THREE cricket weeks begin today in the Midlands: the 54th Michaelmas week at Maritzburg College, the 17th Weston cricket week in the Mooi River area and the U14 Hilton festival at Hilton College.

Most interest will be generated by the Oppenheimer Michaelmas Week, where nine top KZN schools play against some of the best teams from outside the province. The three top sides from beyond the KZN borders at the tournament are probably St Stithians, Affies and King Edward VII School (Kes).

St Stithians are arguably the top side at the week and they play Maritzburg College on Goldstones today, St Charles tomorrow on the St Charles Oval, Michaelhouse on Monday on Barns, and in a T20 against Northwood on Tuesday at Eston. St Sithians were the only side to win all five T20 games at St David’s two weeks ago, and they have three players in the SA U17 elite squad — batsmen Ryan Rickleton and Ricardo Vasconcelos, and seamer Brandon Glover. Seven of the team were at the Michaelmas week last year.

Another side who will be difficult to beat are Affies. They have a very experienced team, with only one player who is at the week for the first time. Two players — captain Leus du Plooy and Driaan Vortser — are at their fifth week, with two other players in their third week. They take on Glenwood on Varsity 2 today, Hilton at Richmond tomorrow, Maritzburg College on Monday, and Westville in a T20 on the Varsity Oval.

Kes always seem to have some star players and none more so than batsman Grant Roelofson, at his second week, bowler Brian Leitch, who captured 14 wickets in five T20 games at St David’s recently, and Jayden Broodryk, who played in the Lions U19 team at the beginning of the year. They play Northwood today on the PMB Oval, Kearsney at Collegians tomorrow, Hilton at Eston on Monday, and a T20 against DHS on Barns.

The top KZN team are Westville, who did not lose a match during the first term and they come to the week off a good win against Waterkloof in a 50-over match on Thursday. Waterkloof beat Maritzburg College in a T20 on Wednesday.

Captain and all-rounder Luke Schlemmer, batsman Jason Oakes, and opening bowler Nick Pentz are their senior players, and will play a large part in their matches. Today, Westville play Pretoria BHS at Eston, tomorrow they come up against St Albans on Varsity 2 and St David’s on the PMB Oval on Monday. As mentioned, and perhaps the T20 game to watch, is against Affies on the Varsity Oval.

There are a number of elite SA U17 squad players at the week: the three from St Stithians mentioned above, Hanco Olivier and Nico Loubser from Grey College, Sibonela Makhanya from DHS, Sohail Mahmoud from Maritzburg College, Okuhle Cele from Glenwood, Tim Niemand from Hudson Park and Ravaldo Moonsammy from St Alban’s.

Missing from the week are the SA U19 players who are playing in a quadrangular series in India. They are Greg Oldfield from Michaelhouse, Lungi Ngidi from Hilton, Andile Phehlukwayo from Glenwood and the SA captain, Yaseen Valli, from Kes, who will all be missed by their teams.

The U14 festival at Hilton College includes five KZN schools — the hosts, Michaelhouse, St Charles, Maritzburg College and Westville, and seven schools from outside the province. These include Rondebosch and Wynberg from Cape Town, Grey College from Bloemfontein, St Alban’s from Pretoria and St Stithians, St John’s and Parktown from Johannesburg. All six matches are played on fields at Hilton.


Today: DHS-St David’s (Collegians), Glenwood-Affies (Varsity 2), Hilton-Hudson Park (Barns), Kearsney-Grey College (Varsity Oval), M. College-St Stithians (Goldstones), Michaelhouse-St John’s (Richmond), Northwood-Kes (PMB Oval), St Charles-St Alban’s (St Charles), Westville–Pretoria BHS (Eston).

Tomorrow: DHS-Grey College (Eston), Glenwood-St David’s (Varsity Oval), Hilton-Affies (Richmond), Kearsney-Kes (Collegians), M. College-St John’s (Goldstones), M.house-Hudson Park (PMB Oval), Northwood-Pretoria BHS (Barns), St Charles-St Stithians (St Charles), Westville-St Alban’s (Varsity 2).

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