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World Sports Betting Cape Cobras coach Ashwell Prince is upbeat about the return of international players Hashim Amla and skipper JP Duminy for the hosts’ next Momentum One Day Cup clash against the Multiply Titans at PPC Newlands on Friday.

Asked about Amla, Prince said he did not closely observe his technique in the tests, but he had scored a One-Day International not so long ago and is looking forward to having a player of Amla’s experience at the top of the order.

“I am excited about Amla batting at the top of the order and JP in the middle, and the fact that they are batting around our younger batsmen, will add a lot for them,” he said.

Prince stated earlier in the week that he backed all-rounder George Linde and the wicketkeeper/batsman Kyle Verreynne for selection for the Cricket World Cup and when asked about this endorsement from his coach, Verreynne said, “a few months ago I wasn’t even sure I would play one-dayers for the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras. I want to focus on the Cobras and stay level-headed before I can dream of wearing the Proteas jersey.

“It is a nice feeling that the coach backs me, but I need to stay focused and perform more consistently to be rewarded to play for the Proteas,” Linde said.

Looking ahead to Friday’s clash against the Multiply Titans, Prince acknowledged that the Momentum One Day Cup is a tight competition, but that every team is beatable.

“I will prepare for them the same way we always do, by studying their strengths and weaknesses and see if we can pick some holes in them.”

World Sports Betting Cape Cobras squad: JP Duminy (Captain), Hashim Amla, David Bedingham, Tladi Bokako, Rory Kleinveldt, George Linde, Janneman Malan, Pieter Malan, Aviwe Mgijima, Akhona Mnyaka, Dane Paterson, Dane Piedt, Kyle Verreynne.

The two four-day matches he played before the Momentum One Day Cup and an improved bowling action are part of the reason why George Linde’s name is almost the first to be dotted down on coach Ashwell Prince’s team sheet.

 Linde has scored 164 runs in the opening 4 matches of the tournament and he has captured 6 wickets at an impressive average of 24.50, at an economy rate of just 3.97, with best figures of 3-39 against the Bizhub Highveld Lions this past Sunday in Oudtshoorn.

 But the all-rounder preferred the 2-23 that he captured against the VKB Knights.

 The World Sports Betting Cape Cobras have won two out of four games so far and although the bowlers have at times been under pressure, Linde has given the bowling unit credit for their perfomances. He said the VKB Knights were on their way to 350 at one stage, but the Cobras bowlers kept plugging away and pushed the run-rate down. Ultimately the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras won that match, after a fine century from Kyle Verreynne.

 Linde says his improved action allows him to regulate his own pace and he also communicates with fellow spinner Dane Piedt, about the wicket.

 “In order for you to be successful, you have to read the batsman and the wicket well,” said Linde.

 “My consistency has now improved and I can now frustrate batsmen who cannot pierce the field and then I force them into fatal errors,” he said.

 He has done this so excellently that the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras coach, Ashwell Prince, has called him a future Proteas player.

 One of the reasons for this high praise is that Linde is an underrated batsman higher up the order, where he smashed 57 off 55 balls in the match against the Lions, coming in at number 4, which propelled the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras to 298 for five. He received great support from the rest of the top-order, especially from Zubayr Hamza.

 Linde is upbeat about the game on Friday against the Multiply Titans. “It’s one of the matches every season that we relish – to play against the Titans. If we win this game, we will have momentum on our side,” he concluded.

 

 

George Linde continued to impress for the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras after a fine all-round showing that guided them to a comfortable 21-run Momentum One-Day Cup win over the Bizhub Highveld Lions in Oudtshoorn on Sunday.

The slow left-armer was promoted to bat at No. 4 at the Recreation Ground and struck an excellent 57 off 55 balls (5 fours, 1 six), before grabbing three for 39 in 10 excellent overs as 298 for five played 277 all out.

Dwaine Pretorius launched a valiant late bid to chase down the target for the visitors with 75 off 42 balls but was dismissed with 12 balls remaining and 35 runs still required.

For the hosts, Zubayr Hamza also impressed by top-scoring with an unbeaten 88 (97 balls, 6 fours), helping them make it two wins from four so far this campaign.

In fact, the Cobras were strong with the bat all-round after winning the toss and batting. The Malan brothers, Janneman and Pieter, struck 44 and 46 respectively in an 82-run opening stand, and after both had fallen by the time 112 were on the board, Linde and Hamza added 85 for the third wicket.

Jason Smith then added the finishing touches with 35 not out off 27 balls that allowed the home side to set 299. Nono Pongolo ended as the pick of the travelling bowlers with two for 34.

The Lions lost Ryan Rickelton (6) with only 11 on the board and were left chasing the game from there onwards.

There were starts for Reeza Hendricks (37), Kagiso Rapulana (46), Rassie van der Dussen (37) and Nicky van den Bergh (23), but all three were out – three to Linde’s spin – with more than 100 still needed.

And, when Bjorn Fortuin was run-out for one, it looked like the end was near.

But the Pretorius assault raised hope, until he became one of three wickets that were taken by Dane Paterson (3/58).

In the end it was not enough, though, with the Lions all out in 49.4 overs and left winless after four games of the campaign.

Andile Phehlukwayo again starred with bat and ball as the Hollywoodbets Dolphins made it three Momentum One-Day Cup wins from three with a 22-run win over the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras in Paarl on Friday night.

The Standard Bank Proteas all-rounder first struck a run-a-ball 67 off 66 balls (6 fours, 2 sixes) that helped the unbeaten visitors amass 276 for seven, before claiming four wickets for 56, including the key one of George Linde, as the hosts were dismissed for 254 in 49 overs at Eurolux Boland Park.

It capped another stellar performance for Phehlukwayo, who in the previous game made 69 in a solid win over the Multiply Titans.

The joint defending champions Dolphins have now won three out of three matches, while the Cobras lost for the second time in three outings.

They will be ruing what may have been though after showing plenty of potential through the game. The local side won the toss and opted to field first, with their bowlers responding well early on to send the visitors tumbling to 71 for four.

Vaughn van Jaarsveld (5), Dane Vilas (5) and David Miller (7) all failed at the top, with only Morne van Wyk (36) making any significant early contribution.

It then took a 103-run fifth wicket stand between top scorer Khaya Zondo, who made 93 off 115 balls (2 fours, 2 sixes), and Phehlukwayo to kickstart the Dolphins, as they managed to set a competitive 277.

Dane Paterson was the pick of the bowlers with three for 40, while Linde bagged two for 50.

The home side started the chase well enough by reaching 60 for one, before three quick strikes left them on 88 for four.

Kyle Verreynne initially gave them hope with his 52 (63 balls, 2 fours), but was removed by the outstanding Imran Tahir (2/34).

At that stage on 192 for six, the Cobras looked beaten, but Linde smashed 63 off 48 balls (4 fours, 1 six) and shared a partnership of 61 with Dane Piedt (27), giving their side hope.

However, the return of Phehlukwayo at the death saw him remove the key man and with it the hopes of the hosts as the last four wickets fell for a single run.

“If Kyle Verreynne continues to be prolific like in the first two Momentum One Day Cup games, he should be in line to be Quinton de Kock’s understudy at the Cricket World Cup,” said Ashwell Prince, coach of the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras.

He was speaking on Thursday before the weekend games against the Hollywoodbets Dolphins at Eurolux Boland Park in Paarl on Friday and the clash with the bizhub Highveld Lions at the Recreation Oval in Oudtshoorn on Sunday.

Asked about the keys to success, Prince said there are no easy games in the competition and the Dolphins have a particularly strong batting line up. “It is about handling the critical moments well and about staying composed during those times.

“I thought George Linde bowled better in his 1-23 than in the match against the Warriors last season where he captured a career-best 6-47. If he continue to bowl like that, he has every chance to represent the Proteas one day and I told him so after the game against the VKB Knights.”

Talking about the Proteas, Prince said that if De Kock gets injured on the morning of the first match at the Cricket World Cup, it would be too late to fly out a substitute. If Verreynne continues to bat the way he did the first two games of the Momentum One Day Cup, he will be throwing his hat into the national ring.

“Some people talk about his small stature, but his strike-rate is above 100 and that says a lot,” Prince said.

Prince said he was not unduly worried about the 15 for three that the Knights inflicted upon the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras because usually the Malan brothers, Janneman and Pieter, produce the goods.

Zubayr Hamza, who was part of the South African test squad, has been added to the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras squad and is available for selection for both games.

World Sports Betting Cape Cobras Squad: Dane Piedt (Captain), Pieter Malan (Vice-Captain), David Bedingham, Tladi Bokako, Zubayr Hamza, Rory Kleinveldt, George Linde, Janneman Malan, Akhona Mnyaka, Aviwe Mgijima, Dane Paterson, Jason Smith, Kyle Verreynne

A century by Vaughn van Jaarsveld helped the Hollywoodbets Dolphins make a solid start to their 4-Day Domestic Series encounter against the log-leading World Sports Betting Cape Cobras in their decisive final round encounter in Pietermaritzburg on Monday.

The hosts reached the close at the City Oval on 293 for six thanks to the opener’s 21st career century.

Van Jaarsveld made 120 (153 balls, 16 fours, 1 six) and shared in a 111-run opening stand with Michael Erlank, who made exactly 50 (121 balls, 8 fours) in his second game for the franchise. Their partnership laid a solid foundation for basement side the Dolphins against a visiting side who are in pursuit of a first four-day crown since 2013/14.

They went into the game with just over a three-point lead over the bizhub Highveld Lions, but were on the backfoot early on as the home openers got away after losing the toss and being asked to bat first.

After their stand was eventually broken by George Linde, who was outstanding with four for 62, wickets began to fall more regularly.

The Dolphins batsmen would have been kicking themselves, though, as everyone bar Sibonelo Makhanya (0), had starts.

Marques Ackerman (23) added 50 for the second wicket with Van Jaarsveld, with 55 following between the latter and captain Khaya Zondo (25) for wicket number three.

After the dismissal of the centurion left the score on 226 for five, Grant Roelofsen (17) and Senuran Muthusamy (27 not out) added 38 together, with Keshav Maharaj (20 not out) keeping the latter company at the close.

Centurions Janneman Malan and David Bedingham and strike bowler Tladi Bokako performed brilliantly in their first pre-season outdoor excursion for the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras against the Hollywoodbets Dolphins in Durban on Monday and Tuesday.

Bokako captured 5-44 in eleven overs and in tandem with Lizaad Williams (3-26 in eleven overs) had the top-order in disarray and limited the Dolphins to 173.

Malan scored an unbeaten 151, while Bedingham struck 101 and Ferisco Adams blasted 50. The new acquisitions threw their hat into the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras ring and stated their case to the selection committee.

“The new recruits put up their hands, gave themselves a sense of belonging and will draw confidence from this performance,” said Faiek Davids, assistant coach of the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras.

“Janneman scored runs all around the wicket. He was strong on the on-side, handled the short ball well and also scored richly on the off-side. He is tailor-made for white-ball cricket, but look at his first-class record (1943 runs in 23 matches at an average of 55.51). He has a strike-rate of almost 70 (67.96),” Davids said.

Davids also said Bedingham had matured markedly from the last time he saw him. His game plans were clear and he struck the ball hard, the assistant coach added.

“Tladi and Lizaad were phenomenal and had them against the ropes on 20 for five. The wicket was a bit sticky with green patches and they kept the ball up to the bat. Tladi is a bundle of energy with good lines and lengths and he nipped it off the seam nicely. He is super fit.

“Lizzy was machine-like. He was steady and hit the seam regularly,” said Davids.

They restricted the Dolphins to 173 all out.

The World Sports Betting Cape Cobras batted at a rate of 4.3 per over and scored 362 for eight in 83.2 overs.

In the subsequent T20 match between KwaZulu-Natal and the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras, the latter scored 167 for eight thanks to a splendid 70 by Zubayr Hamza and 40 by Adams. The hosts were limited to 133 for six and the Cobras won by 34 runs.

Mthiwekhaya Nabe, who took 2-32 in the two-day game, captured 1-35 in four overs, but the pick was Williams, who nabbed 2-12 in three overs. Bokako ended with 1-22 in three overs. George Linde struck twice in his four overs which cost 26 runs.

It was the second outdoor training match of the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras and an encouraging early performance against a strong foe.

 

OBUS PIENAAR starred with bat and ball as South Western Districts took a huge stride towards a place in the Africa T20 Cup semi-finals with a comfortable five-wicket victory over WSB Western Province in a Pool A clash at Sahara Park Willowmoore on Saturday.

The all-rounder first sent down a tight four overs that cost 24 and included a wicket, before striking two fours and a six in an unbeaten 32 off 32 balls to lead his side past the 122-run victory target with 13 balls to spare.

The result means that SWD have an excellent chance of progressing to the last four with their eight points. WP are eliminated.

It was another impressive showing from the Oudtshoorn-based side, who were six-run winners over Easterns on Friday.

After winning the toss and bowling, they restricted WP to just 121/5. Pienaar did well with the ball, but local boy Glenton Stuurman was even better with one for 15 with the new ball, while the pick of the bowlers was George Linde (2/19).

Jason Smith top scored with 31.

Pienaar was the only batsman to top 20 for his side, who were in some trouble on 40/3, but Todd Walker and Brendon Louw hit 19 each to help take their side over the line.

The pick of the bowlers for WP was the young Michael Cohen who took two for 17.