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World Sports Betting Cape Cobras coach, Ashwell Prince was full of praise for the fighting spirit shown by the likes of Kyle Verreynne, Pieter Malan and Dane Paterson after turning a potential loss into an almost-victorious position against the Momentum Multiply Titans in Benoni.

The match was ultimately called a draw after the captains shook hands late on the final day, but Dane Paterson’s roaring spell after lunch on Day 3, where he took 5 wickets in the session to end the innings with figures of 7/91 (33), allowed Prince’s men back into the game, but still with loads to do with the bat.

Pieter Malan followed his century in the first innings with another solid knock of 48 – in the process reaching the milestone of 10,000 first-class runs – but ultimately it was left to batsman Kyle Verreynne to once again defy the Titans bowlers with an innings which was straight out the top drawer of gutsy cricket. The Cobras youngster notched up his first century in 4 Day cricket for the Cobras in the 1st innings, scoring 155, and in the 2nd, he scored 115 to lift the Cobras and set the Titans a score of 206 to win the game in the final session.

The Cobras bowlers almost pulled off a stunning victory, taking 6 of the Titans wickets, before time ran out and the captains shook hands on the draw and the coach was encouraged to see the fight shown by his team: “It was a game that ebbed and flowed…we were up against it early on, we then recovered brilliantly with that great partnership between the captain, Pieter Malan, and Kyle Verreynne, but then collapsed after that,” Prince stated.

“Then we didn’t bowl too well in the first innings until Dane Paterson bowled that unbelievable spell to bring us back into the game and then Kyle was unbelievable in both innings.

“So overall there were lots of parts of the game that we were happy with and lots of parts that we weren’t happy with.”

Verreynne expressed pride in his performance but ultimately, for him, it would have been even sweeter if it resulted in a win for his team. “I’m obviously very pleased about my performances, but for me, the team always comes first. First prize was to get a win, so on that front I was a little disappointed, but from the situations we found ourselves in, I’m quite proud of myself that I was able to get us out of those situations and from a space of staring defeat down the barrel to getting us into a position where pulling off a win was at least a possibility.”

The World Sports Betting Cape Cobras once again head out on the road for their next game of the CSA 4 Day Domestic Series to face the Hollywoodbets Dolphins in Pietermaritzburg starting on Monday.

Pieter Malan and Kyle Verreynne both struck centuries and shared in a record partnership that helped the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras enjoy what turned out to be an excellent day one of their 4-Day Domestic Series encounter against the Momentum Multiply Titans in Benoni on Monday.

The pair put on a 268-run stand for the fourth wicket – a franchise record – that helped their side reach stumps on 319 for seven at Willowmoore Park.

Their partnership, though, was all that stood between a poor day and a good one after no other batsman managed more than 16.

The Cobras, though, will be satisfied with their position in the round two game, especially after losing their first-round clash to the Imperial Lions last week.

However, it was not all dominance as they struggled either side of the marathon stand, first slipping to 34 for three after losing the toss and being put in to bat first.

Janneman Malan (4) and David Bedingham (0) were both taken out by pick-of-the-bowlers Corbin Bosch (4/62), with Tshepo Moreki (1/68) dislodging Jason Smith for 11.

Then came the key partnership that carried the Cobras past 100, 200 and also 300 as Malan and Verreynne broke the previous record of 251 set by Hashim Amla and Justin Ontong against the VKB Knights at Bloemfontein in 2017/18.

Bosch broke the stand when he got rid of young wicketkeeper Verreynne for a career-best free-flowing 155 (207 balls, 21 fours, 1 six), also just his second century in first-class cricket.

Malan followed soon after reaching his 31st career ton when he fell to Junior Dala (2/49) for a patient 120 (272 balls, 16 fours).

Dala struck again late on, with Matthew Kleinveldt (16) and Dane Paterson (3) taking the visitors to the close in a good position.

World Sports Betting Cape Cobras Coach, Ashwell Prince, named his first squad of the season ahead of the opening round of the CSA 4 Day Domestic Series match against the Imperial Lions in Potchefstroom starting on Monday.

The squad includes spinner George Linde, who was recently named in the SA A four-day squad and the most recent addition to the squad, left arm seamer Nandre Burger.

Prince has also named opening batsman Pieter Malan as the interim captain in the absence of captain Dane Piedt, who is currently with the Standard Bank Proteas Test squad in India.

Malan expressed his pride in taking up the reins on an interim basis: “It is truly an honour to be the interim captain while Dane is away with the Proteas. I will be looking to continue what he managed to achieve last season and hopefully lead us to a good start in the 4 Day competition.”

“We always set out to do as best as we can and that’s to win every game,” said Prince.

“So that’s what we’ll be setting out to do even though we all know that winning every game is not possible. But that’s what we set out to do. It’s been a long pre-season and now that we’re finally here, everyone is raring to go.”

Prince also says he has not paid too much of attention to the other teams building up the season, stating that his focus was solely on getting their own processes correct.

“I haven’t looked much at the Lions to be honest,” he added. “My philosophy has always been the same that there’s no easy games in the competition, we have to focus as well as we can and do the best we can to execute our plans.”

The first part of the first-class for 2019/20 runs for the entire month of October when four rounds will be played, with the competition then breaking for the Mzansi Super League (MSL).

Round five takes place after MSL 2.0, just before the Christmas break, with three rounds set for January, one for March and one for early April when the season will conclude.

World Sports Betting Cape Cobras squad: Pieter Malan (c), David Bedingham, Nandre Burger, Tladi Bokako, Simon Khomari, Matthew Kleinveldt, George Linde, Janneman Malan, Aviwe Mgijima, Mthiwekhaya Nabe, Dane Paterson, Jason Smith, Kyle Verreynne

World Sports Betting Cape Cobras Chief Executive Nabeal Dien, has addressed a recent media report written by journalist David Cox for Al Jazeera, regarding racial divisions within the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras last season.

Dien, including a host of senior players, are aghast by the accusations and refute any such claims.

Western Cape Cricket Chairman Advocate Nick Kock and Vice Chairman Angelo Carolissen have also added their disapproval to these false reports.

“Unity is PRIMARY at the Cobras. We have worked hard on this and not a single player in our squad will disagree. False accusations like this are scathing to our team and organisation as a whole,” Dien said.

“We call on the journalist and publication in question to retract this article and issue a formal apology,” he added.

“We have spent many hours ensuring our environment is inclusive and a healthy space for players and management. After a pre-season venture last season the team returned and adopted the slogan #StrengthInDiversity. It is used in all our social media communication which reflects the unity of our squad.”

World Sports Betting Cape Cobras captain Dane Piedt also expressed his disappointment at the accusations levelled at the Western Cape franchise.

“It is extremely disappointing. Being the captain of the team, it affects me even more, and on my leadership and the unifying culture we have created at the Cobras. It is really disappointing that someone from outside that has no idea of how our team functions and the camaraderie within the squad had made such comments,” Piedt said.

Senior Black African batsman, and a former World Sports Betting Cape Cobras Player of the Year, Aviwe Mgijima also addressed the matter.

“I am saddened and upset with the accusations against our squad,” Mgijima said.

“The statements in that article are indeed not true. It saddens me that a member of another team would spread rumours and lies about what transpired in our space.

“I for one do not even remember there being a division amongst us. I really hope we get to the bottom of this and our squad is cleared.”

Opening batsman Pieter Malan was equally taken aback with the claims of a racial fraction within the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras dressing room.

“We have the most diverse and open-minded squad in the country and these allegations go against everything we believe in at the Cobras. It is insulting and defamatory to say the least. Nothing like this happened in our team environment and he should name his source if he wants to take this story any further,” Malan said.

 

World Sports Betting Cape Cobras coach Ashwell Prince knows that his team needs to get momentum, improve their catching and transform their execution with the ball in the last ten overs if they are to be victorious in the next couple of matches in the Momentum One Day Cup against the bizhub Highveld Lions and the Hollywoodbets Dolphins on Thursday and Saturday respectively.

“Our death bowling let us down and was disappointing in the match against the Titans. It happened after a catch was dropped off Aiden Markram’s blade and he went on to score another 64 runs off 23 balls,” said Prince.

“If they had accumulated 280 or 290 (instead of 320 for six), we would have improved our chances of winning.

“I want to add that we can improve our batting by another 20 percent as well,” added Prince.

JP Duminy, the skipper, said the execution of the Cobras with the ball in the final 15 overs was not on par.

“You have to give credit to the Titans’ pair of Markram and Farhaan Behardien for how they absorbed the pressure when they were on 31 for five, but we did not execute well after the 35th over.

“We also have not been sharing in 100-run partnerships or scoring enough tons in the first half of the competition,” said Duminy.

Kyle Verreynne has recovered from concussion and will serve as wicketkeeper in the matches against the Lions on Thursday at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium and against the Dolphins in Pietermaritzburg on Saturday.

Dane Piedt, Pieter Malan and Mthiwekhaya Nabe are all included in the squad, whilst Hashim Amla is not available for family reasons.

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

 Half-centuries by Pieter Malan and Simon Khomari put the World Sports Betting Cobras in a commanding position at the halfway stage of their 4-Day Domestic Series encounter against the Multiply Titans in Oudtshoorn on Tuesday.

The pair shared an opening stand of 135 as the hosts replied to the visitors’ 275 by going to stumps on 299 for five.

Malan, one of the most consistent batsmen in South African first-class cricket over the past two seasons, made 95 (181 balls, 12 fours) and was still unbeaten – although he had to retire hurt due to severe cramp at the Recreation Ground.

Khomari, meanwhile, recorded a career-best 77 (90 balls, 14 fours), beating his previous highest score of 70 against the Warriors at Paarl in 2015/16.

Late wickets did jolt the log-leaders, although they still had five wickets in the bag heading into day three.

Earlier there was heartbreak for Leus du Plooy as he fell three short of a century when he was the last man standing for the Titans unbeaten on 97 (257 balls, 12 fours, 1 six).

Just three runs were added to the away side’s 272 for nine with Alfred Mothoa (1) dismissed by Dane Piedt, who completed an excellent return of six for 75 in 41.2 overs.

The Malan-Khomari stand then provided an excellent backbone for the reply, although it ended when Shaun von Berg (1/101) accounted for the latter.

Zubayr Hamza (28) managed to add 71 for the second wicket, before he was removed by Du Plooy (1/48), before David Bedingham (41) and Kyle Verreynne (17) took the score to 265 for two thanks to another half-century partnership that yielded 59.

The home side lost their way somewhat from there thanks to a double strike by Matthew Arnold (2/42) and one from Mothoa (1/34), but with five wickets still standing, the Cobras held the advantage through a 24-run lead.

 

Cricket South Africa today announced the appointment of Dean Elgar as stand-in captain of the Standard Bank Proteas in place of Faf du Plessis for the final Castle Lager Test match against Pakistan, starting at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium on Friday.

The selectors have also put uncapped World Sports Betting Cape Cobras opening batsman Pieter Malan on standby for Aiden Markram, who has a right thigh injury sustained while fielding in the previous Test match at PPC Newlands.

Markram will undergo a fitness test tomorrow to determine whether he can play.

“The appointment of Elgar as stand-in captain is part of our strategy to develop our pool of leaders,” commented CSA National Selection Panel (NSP) convener Linda Zondi. “We have previously used Aiden Markram and Quinton de Kock in this role in ODI matches and Dean has previously captained the Proteas at Test match level against England at Lord’s in 2017.

“Pieter Malan has an outstanding track record in four-day domestic cricket over the past two seasons, having made more than 1700 runs including 7 centuries. He has also made the step up to South Africa A level, first against Australia and then against India A on the sub-continent,” concluded Mr. Zondi.

The Malan brothers collect runs and accolades like Chad le Clos swimming championship medals.

Pieter Malan has struck 625 runs in the 4 Day Franchise series at an average of 56.81. He is the leading domestic run-scorer in the series, while Janneman, who has assembled 562 runs at an average of 51.09, is the third most prolific scorer in the competition.

Pieter Malan is fourth on the list of national averages and Janneman ninth. The two openers of the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras, average an opening stand of 50.72 in eleven innings this season in the 4 Day Franchise series.

They have produced a stand of more than hundred runs for the first wicket on three occasions and have once assembled a half-century partnership.

Their belligerence explains why the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras have secured 22.12 batting bonus points, second most behind the bizhub Highveld Lions (22.72) during the first six matches.

Dane Piedt, skipper of the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras, says the Malan brothers’ ability to assess the situation makes them such valuable partners. “They take time to set up their stall,” he says.

“They are from the same bloodline and have good communication,” he adds.

“They are also very different and complement each other. Pieter is solid and has been the core of our team by scoring big hundreds and bashing the door down to be selected for South Africa.

“Janneman puts pressure on the bowlers and plays an aggressive brand of cricket,” he adds.

“Pieter makes it hard on any opposition captain and he forces the bowlers to bowl in second, third and fourth spells,” he adds.

“We have different styles and approaches,” Pieter Malan says. “I try and bat time, Janneman is more attacking”.

“There is good chemistry between us. We have grown up together.

“I try and work hard and prepare as excellently as possible in the week leading up to the match.

“The two of us communicate well in the middle and speak about plans against the bowlers. But I don’t correct him if he plays an attacking brand. He knows the game well,” Pieter Malan said.

“At the end of the day, opening partnerships in any form of the game settles the whole dressing room down. We have had it more often than not this season with the Malan brothers,” said coach Ashwell Prince.

“In the previous match against the Warriors, they added in excess of 120 in both innings.

“The reason for this is that they are hungry, motivated and good batsmen in search of higher honours,” Prince said.

A 28th first-class century by Pieter Malan paved the way for the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras to take control of their Domestic 4-Day Series clash with the VKB Knights at the halfway stage in Cape Town on Tuesday.

The 29-year-old, who also went past 9 000 runs in red-ball cricket, was unbeaten on 118 (282 balls, 16 fours) at stumps with his side on 302 for six – a lead of 23.

Malan had begun the day unbeaten on six and with his brother and debutant, Janneman, batting at the other end on the same score. The pair put on 59 for the first wicket, before the new Cobras man fell for 38.

Zubayr Hamza was next to go for 20, followed by another player winning his maiden cap, David Bedingham, for 26 to pick of the bowlers Ryan McLaren, who finished the day with three for 47.

Aviwe Mgijama (40) then helped Malan put on 59 for the fourth wicket to hand control firmly to the home side. The fall of his wicket left the Cobras on 185 for four and brought rising young wicketkeeper Kyle Verreynne to the middle. He made just 27, but added another priceless 72 to the score beside Malan – a man who scored an impressive 892 runs in the last campaign.

McLaren then struck two more double blows by accounting for Verreynne and Dane Piedt (4), although Rory Kleinveldt (20 not out) dug in at the close with the home side in charge.

Get as close to the ball as possible and play it at the last moment – this has been the successful credo employed by the latest South African centurion – and it is a game plan that World Sports Betting Cape Cobras opening batsman Pieter Malan wants to borrow from Theunis de Bruyn when he represents South Africa ‘A’ in India in July and August.

Malan is one of two top-order batsmen from the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras who will represent South Africa ‘A’ against the India ‘A’ team in India. The other batting representative is Zubayr Hamza, while spinner Dane Piedt and fast bowler Mthiwekhaya Nabe complete the group of representatives from Cape Town heading over to India on Tuesday as part of the four-day squad.

Malan said he has taken some learnings about spinning conditions by watching the centurion De Bruyn score 101 in the second Test against Sri Lanka in Galle. It was De Bruyn’s first test ton.

“I don’t have a definite game plan whether to play on the front foot or back foot, but I know I must be clear in my decision making whether to go forward or backwards and commit myself with definite movement,” said Malan.

Although the conditions are tough and he has not played in India, he has played against spinners of international class which has helped him. The past season he represented the Cape side against Shaun von Berg and Tabraiz Shamsi – both of whom were in the Proteas touring test squad to Sri Lanka.

Hamza is looking forward to the tour but expects tough conditions: “It was beneficial to me that I went on the bowling and batting camp in India recently. I expect the conditions to be tough and I’ve decided that I want to get as close to the ball as possible when delivered by the Indian spinners. Or if I want to get out of the way, I need to be as far as possible from the ball.”

Malan and Hamza were part of the South Africa ‘A’ team that played against an Australian touring team last season and both have been heavy scorers for the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras.

Malan struck 892 runs at an average of 55.75, while Hamza hammered 828 runs at an average of 69 in the Sunfoil Series.

Malan also compiled 615 runs in the Momentum One Day Cup competition last season.

Ashwell Prince, the head coach of the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras, said he spoke to all the players on Monday and motivated them to adjust their game plans to the subcontinent as they will play half of their cricket against Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and India if they represent South Africa one day.

“We should not wish those conditions away, but formulate a game plan that makes us successful in foreign conditions,” he said.

“It is about learning as much as you can and adding to your skills set of playing spin to the rest of your game,” Prince said.

He said India has become the nation that has improved the most in foreign conditions while other nations, including South Africa, have gone backwards in foreign conditions recently.