By Dries Badenhorst – Curro Durbanville’s u/13A Cricket Team was crowned champions at the 2016 edition of the Mossel Bay Cricket Festival. By winning this tournament they have now won 33 games in the season.
Preparations for the tournament included a warm-up match against Brackenfell High School’s u/14A team. They convincingly won this game. This victory settled some of the nerves one normally experience after the winter break and ensured that they went into the tournament with some winning momentum. Upon arrival in Mossel Bay they also won a warm-up match against a touring team from Benoni.
Their 1st match was a clash against Somerset West. Fielding first they restricted SSW to 74/4 in 20 overs. Superb bowling by Jaywin Thops (2 wickets in four overs for 5 runs) ensured that the SSW’s top order failed to establish a noteworthy partnership, at the beginning of the innings. He was well supported by Tiaan Visagie (1 wicket in four overs for 14 runs) and Jaryd Morcom (1 wicket for 5 runs in 2 overs). It was only at the back-end of the innings that Jeandré Beets (20) and Grant Swanepoel (19) managed to put a partnership together to give SSW some form of positive momentum.
Going in to bat, Nicholas Govender (41*) and Jamie Ricketts (17*) made light work of the run chase as they reached the winning total in the 12th over.
The 2nd match was against D’Almeida, a Hub team from Mossel Bay. On this occasion Curro batted 1st and set the local team a target of 136 runs. Nicholas Govender opened the innings and again set the tone with an unbeaten 60 runs from 71 balls. He was well supported by Christian French who scored a quickfire 23 runs off 23 balls.
Jamie Ricketts struck early to remove D’Almeida’s opening batsman, Dristin, for only 5 runs. It was however Jaryd Morcom who crippled the batting side with 4 wickets for only 10 runs in 4 overs. Other bowlers who chipped in with wickets was Carl Vlok (1) and Kyran Munz (1). The bowlers were well supported by an outstanding fielding effort that was responsible for 3 run outs. Curro won the game with 52 runs after dismissing D’Almeida for only 84 runs.
Their 3rd match was against Durbanville 2. The Curro boys was once again victorious by 49 runs. Nicholas Govender and Christian French once again lead the charge with a 130 odd opening partnership. In the 3rd consecutive match Nicholas (59*) batted through the innings. Christian French batted well for his 53 runs before he was caught at midwicket. He chipped the ball straight up into the air after attempting a shot across the line in his effort to accelerate the run rate towards the end of the innings. Curro set Durbanville a target of 137 runs.
Again the bowlers got down to business. Although Durbanville’s top order managed to get 2 partnerships going, Curro’s boys bowled tight to ensure that they batted way below the expected run rate. The top 3 batsman consumed 78 balls for only 50 runs. This run rate of 3, 8 in effect crippled their chase as they had to bat at 6, 85 runs per, from the word go, over to win. With Durbanville having to score 87 runs off the last 42 balls (required run rate of 12, 4) to win, the next 6 wickets fell for only 12 runs. Carl Vlok was the best bowler in this match as he bagged 2 wickets for only 2 runs in 1 over. Jaywin Thops and Braydon Wilson also contributed with 2 wickets each.
The victory over Durbanville 2 ensured that Curro Durbanville booked their place in the Cup Final. Although Rosemoor Hub (George), Point Academy (Mossel Bay), Marx Academy (Mossel Bay), Curro Durbanville B, Durbanville 1, Bridgton Hub (Oudtshoorn), Thembalethu Hub (George) and Peninsula (Bellville) also competed in the competition, Somerset West recovered well from their 1st match defeat against Curro A to also book the other spot in the Cup Final.
The boys from Durbanville managed to set Somerset West a target of 142 runs. At the top of the batting order, Nicholas Govender was dismissed for the 1st time in the tournament, but not before he scored 58 runs at a run a ball. His opening partner, Christian French also continued his good form to ensure a solid opening partnership. He was unfortunately stumped for 25 runs just as he again started to put is foot on the accelerator. Kenoe Christians (15) and Braydon Wilson (11) also chipped in with quick runs.
Grant Swanepoel was however a lone soldier in the run chase. He scored a quick 28 runs off 23 balls. Unfortunately he had no support as not one of his fellow batsman managed to make double figures. Curro’s fielding effort however clichéd the game from a defence point of view with no less than 4 run outs. Both opening batsmen were run out within the 1st 2 overs of the match, which ensured that they were under immense pressure right from the start. Jaywin Thops and Braydon Wilson both took 2 wickets in this innings.
The net result was that Curro Durbanville won the final convincingly by 74 runs.
The top performer for Curro, with the bat, was Nicholas Govender who ended the tournament with 218 runs at an average of 218. This was enough to earn him the trophy for the best batsman of the tournament. His opening partner, Christian French, scored a 101 runs in only 3 matches, to end the tournament with an average of 33, 7.
Jaryd Morcom took the most wickets (7), with Jaywin Thops on his tail with 6. Braydon Wilson and Carl Vlok also had a satisfying week with 4 wickets each. Jaywin had the best economy rate of 2, 7 runs per over.
It is also worth mentioning that the B team had a good tournament. They narrowly missed out on a place in the Shield Final. This group, whom missed a number of their regular starting team members, gained valuable experience.
The Primary School’s PAC Chairman, Kevin French, was ecstatic with the tour as a whole. The PAC set themselves a mandate to build a strong sense of tradition within the school. This tour was earmarked as one of the events of the year to do so. For him the success was obviously the result, but more importantly it was measured by what happened next to the field. From the word go all the parents got involved in numerous fundraising activities to make the tour a reality. Numerous parents also joined the team on the tour. He emphasized that one of the vital elements in creating a culture of tradition is the involvement of the parents. Judging on the success of this tour, Curro is well away on laying the foundation stones for meeting their mandate.
But the boys also had a blast off the field. For most of them it was their 1st sport’s tour. As players they all grew and developed further. The fact that this tour included the B team as well, was a major positive.
Deswin Munz, Head of Sport at Curro Durbanville Primary School, also wanted to just thank everyone involved in this tour. “To our two coaches, Henco Bornmann and Cobus van der Westhuizen, thank you for your exceptional coaching and the way you looked after the boys. Thank you to Yolanda French for the catering. And then off course a huge thanks to all the moms who helped with the food, the dads for braaiing and the parents for all their support and sacrifice. I am sure that this will be the start of many more cricket tours by Curro Durbanville.”
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