The Eastern Storm claimed a convincing eight-wicket T20 Knock Out win against SA U19 in Bloemfontein on Friday.
The game was the second of the Pool C double-header at the Mangaung Oval, with the victory leaving the Storm in second place in the group, following a similar win by the Dolphins earlier in the day.
After winning the toss and electing to bat first, SA U19 lived up to their coach’s pre-match comments regarding “giving a good account of ourselves” as the young batsman bravely dispatched the ball to all parts of the ground, led by starlet Dewald Brevis.
Walking in at No 3, the right-hander smashed a 25-ball 46, including four sixes and two fours, in an impressive T20 debut performance.
👏 Dewald Brevis caught the attention of many in the SA U19's opening #T20KO match.
🏏 How will he and the rest of the SA U19s go throughout the competition?
— Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) October 9, 2021
Brevis formed a solid partnership with Andile Simelane (22) worth 54 runs for the third wicket, ending their powerplay on a healthy 64-2.
Crucial inroads were then made in the ninth and 11th overs by the Eastern Storm’s Tumelo Tlhokwe (3-18), with both in-form batsmen removed by the spinner, leaving SA U19 with a rebuild job.
That task was taken head-on by captain George van Heerden (34) and wicketkeeper-batsman Kaden Solomon (30*), as they helped propel the rising stars to a competitive total of 172-8.
Along with Tlhokwe, Khwezi Gumede shone with the ball, taking three wickets for 19 runs in just three overs.
In reply, and notwithstanding the early departure of captain Sizwe Masondo (13), the Eastern Storms made light work of the imposing total as their top order laid the foundation for an impressive win.
Opener Danie Rossouw top-scored for the Benoni-based side, with an unbeaten maiden T20 half-century, recording a 48-ball 66 (seven fours) in a 94-run stand with the experienced Grant Thomson (42).
Asakhe Tsaka (1-22) and Liam Alder (1-41) provided SA U19 with a glimmer of hope with the ball, but Rossouw and Jurie Snyman (49*) showed their mettle and guided the Storm over the line with two overs to spare.
The action resumes on Saturday when SA U19 take on the North West Dragons, before Friday’s two victorious teams go head-to-head for the No 1 spot in Pool C.
SA U19 vs North West Dragons (10:00)
Eastern Storm vs Dolphins (14:00)
Dolphins vs SA U19 (10:00)
Eastern Storm vs North West Dragons (14:30)
Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix