Match Report

10 Dec 2016 - First XI (1A) vs Rondebosch

On: 18 Dec 2016

Having recovered well from a poor start to the 2016 leg of the season, Cape Town lapsed back into old ways to end it in even worse form than how they had begun, slumping to a third consecutive defeat – and a second straight one by a bonus point-margin in the Limited Overs competition – to end any remaining chance of making the Semi-Finals for the seventh season in a row.  The result only further worsened their already unimpressive record in the competition during that period, being their 14th defeat in 26 matches during that time.

Put in to bat at the Dumas Oval by their hosts, Cape Town actually began at a rollicking rate – despite losing two wickets to seamer James Burke as early as the game’s third over.  Three quick boundaries by opening bat Neo Mlumbi, as well as four in one over by William Hantam, had rocketed the visitors to 39 by the end of the fourth over, but gradually Rondebosch began slowing the scoring rate.  The next ten overs consequently brought just 30 additional runs, at which point leg-spinner Alistair Gray struck in his first over by dismissing the dangerous Hantam.  Kyle Verreynne dug in at one end though, turning over a regular flow of singles, but with the boundaries having dried up now, and a second successive partnership being broken in the twenties, the balance of fortunes in the contest had begun to swing towards the home side.

That swing suddenly and dramatically became irreversibly one-sided once Gray returned for his second spell a little over 90 minutes into the match though, as in an amazing turnaround he struck in each of four successive overs to storm to a five-for within eight overs and completely destroy Cape Town’s batting.  An already struggling total of 102 for five thus collapsed to an irreparable 120 for nine in less than half an hour, and the game’s destiny had effectively been decided.  Left stranded on 41* when the last man trudged to the crease, Verreynne hit out – striking Gray for six to reach his fifty from 70 balls faced.  Gray claimed his wicket in his next over though, to finish with figures of six for 32 – only the third six-for managed in the 99 Limited Overs games contested by Cape Town over the past 20 seasons, with only Claremont seamer Greg Abrahams’s six for 30 back in January 2007 being better.

With the visitors’ rapid demise leaving almost an hour still to play before the scheduled Lunch interval, Rondebosch began their run chase immediately – and promptly lost an early wicket of their own.  However, Grant Edmeades and home team skipper Sean Hendrieck progressively blunted Cape Town’s attacks, before gradually taking the offensive to make the match their own.  Three boundaries between them in rapid succession signed off the morning session and took the home side into the interval on a comfortable 47-1 after twelve overs, but the real fireworks were not long in coming once play resumed. 

The first three overs after Lunch cost 20 between them as Rondebosch hit the ground running, posting the fifty partnership between Edmeades and Hendrieck in 13 overs together, but that was just a prelude of the carnage to come.  Two overs later Hendrieck swung two sixes and two fours off a single over, followed at once by Edmeades cracking two sixes of his own off the very next over to reach his 50 from 58 balls.  Hendrieck lofted another six in the over after that too – thereby reaching his own fifty from 54 balls (with four sixes and four fours), as well as posting the hundred-run second-wicket partnership (the second half of which took just 30 balls to complete).

By that point it had long since been clear that there was only going to be one winner in this match, so although Hendrieck holed out on the boundary off Hilio de Abreu’s off-spin two balls later (who two overs later also added a second scalp in similar fashion), the home team’s relentless charge towards their target was scarcely slowed.  Edmeades cracked two further fours before falling for 60 from 73 balls, but by then only twelve runs were still needed – and those came in a flurry of boundaries to get Rondebosch home to a dominant win with essentially half of their allocated over ration still unused.