Sports Update: Cricket

It was just incredible to be part of inter-school cricket fixtures again. This might sound ridiculous, but the excitement on the face while talking to a 1st XI player on Saturday just seemed so far out of place. It was the type of excitement you see on Christmas morning - I think we underestimate how much these boys miss their sport. That excitement was such a blessing with regards to the actual results - the boys weren't caught up in the pressure of results in a derby fixture. They allowed them to play with freedom, and they were brilliant.

Playing our first match of the year against St Andrews on Lower, isn't an easy task by any stretch of the imagination. And what a great venue to play on any day, but even more special to hand over 1st XI caps to Ethan Beyleveld and Onosizo Ntinga in their debut matches for the college at our highest level. In fact, both went on to play significant roles within the game which is exactly what we expect from any youngster representing the college. All our teams played in a longer format, with a second innings of 5 wickets.
Graeme lost the toss in the 1st XI game, and St Andrews decided to bat with no hesitation. Graeme struck first though, and St Andrews were under early pressure at 2-2. Good partnerships through the morning saw a see-saw battle ensuing between the two teams. St Andrews showed their great experience, and never seemed to get flustered. Graeme though managed to get crucial breakthroughs after each break in pay. The period just before lunch and after lunch had vastly different outcomes. Graeme took the new ball just before lunch and struck three times leaving St Andrews on 187/7 at the break. After lunch, Graemeā€™s experience cost them badly as St Andrews raced to 232/7 declared. Aphiwe Mnyanda (3) and Onosiso Ntinga (2) were the main wicket takers and bowled superbly well.
Graeme were quite superb in their reply against a fine bowling attack. After losing an early wicket Liselihle Maphekula and Aphiwe Mnyanda batted superbly under pressure. The St Andrews bowlers gave them nothing, and the batsmen kept their cool despite struggling to score freely. Graeme got to tea at 52/1, but lost Maphekula just as he seemed to express himself with freedom. Losing Mnyanda was a big blow soon thereafter but Mornay Kohl (42) provided a superb captain's performance. He joined with Fabio Rischbieter (46) in a fantastic partnership. Both got out with a few overs remaining in the day, but Graeme had done enough to secure a solid draw on the day. At the close of play Graeme were 179/ 7. It was an impressive start for our young 1st XI.

Senior School Cricket:
1st XI vs St Andrews
St Andrews 232/7 declared
Graeme 179/ 7 declared
Match drawn

05 March 2021