St Stithians (the Lions champions) and St Charles (representing the Dolphins) were the only teams to come through the first day of the Schools T20 national finals in Pretoria on Friday with two wins out of two, writes THEO GARRUN.
St Stithians beat St Andrew’s of Bloemfontein quite comfortably in the morning and then scraped home against Paarl Gim in the afternoon in a super over.
St Charles contested two close games, beating St Andrew’s College by 17 runs in the morning and Waterkloof by 16 runs in the afternoon.
The Saints Paarl Gim game was a thriller. The Joburg side made 151 in their 20 overs and victory look assured with Gimmies needing 16 of the last two overs, and nine off the last. Sebastian de Oliviera bowled the last over and took a wicket with the first ball, followed by two dots balls and two singles, meaning Paarl needed six off the last ball. Arno Marais stepped up and delivered to level the scores.
The match went to a super over and Paarl scored eight runs. Saints then needed six off the last ball and Jodi de Sousa duly smashed the ball out of the ground to give his side the win.
The two wins by St Charles signify that they have stretched their unbeaten record this season to a school record of 19 games. In other first-day action, Queens High (the CSA Inland focus school) caused a bit of a surprise by beating St Andrew’s of Grahamstown.
St Charles 170-6 (James Twycross 38, Jason Login 53; Ryan Ford 3-30)
St Andrew’s College 153-8 (Callum Francis 45, Nicholas Barlow 27; Clive Madande 3-33)
St Charles won by 17 runs
St Stithians 149-8 (Cameron Rowe 35, Jodi de Sousa 33, Liam Mostert 29; Ruan Cronje 2-20)
St Andrew’s School 103-9 (Reeza Alexande 33; Matthew Lieberman 3-12, Thomas Winter 2-17)
St Stithians won by 46 runs
Hudson Park 105-9 (Kwakhanya Gcweka 24; Eddie Visser 2-12, Juan Wilson 2-20)
Paarl Gim 106-3 (Jandre Burger 53)
Paarl Gim won by 7 wickets
Queens 124-5 (Nkanyiso 28, Sima Potlewa 26 not out; Nyako Bopape 2-16)
Waterkloof 125-4 (Jordan Hermann48, SW Kemp 35)
Waterkloof won by 6 wickets
St Stithians 151-4 (Cameron Rowe 74, Liam Mostert 26; Bradley Davids 2-24)
Paarl Gim 151-7 (Floors Brand 43, Benjamin Calitz 38; Thomas Winter 2-37)
Match tied, St Stithians won in super over
St Andrew’s College 111-7 (Matthew Schaefer 42; Lucky Ntleko 2-11)
Queens 112-4 (Sima Potlewa 31; Guy Rushmere 3-17)
Queens won by 6 wickets
St Charles 141-6 (James Twycross 61, Jason Login 34; Richardy Ackermann 2-15)
Waterkloof 125 (Jordan Hermann 24, Richardt Ackerman 24; Wesley Madhevere 3-32)
St Charles won by 16 runs
St Andrew’s School 226-4 (Rikus Allen 57, Henre Koekemoer 63, Ruan Cronje 72; Odungwa Damilola 2-21)
Hudson Park 96-7 (Odungwa Damilola 30 not out; Ruan Cronje 2-13, Pheko Molitsane 2-15)
St Andrew’s School won by 130 runs
St Charles and St Stithians are up against the two CSA focus schools in their remaining pool matches on Saturday morning, so they have the inside track to top their pools and secure good playoff games when the cross-pool action starts on Saturday afternoon.
Fixtures for Saturday morning
Hudson Park (Coastal Focus) vs St Stithians (Lions)
St Charles (Dolphins) vs Queens (Inland Focus)
St Andrews (Knights) vs Paarl Gim (Cobras)
Waterkloof (Titans) vs St Andrews (Warriors)
Photo: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images