Hoërskool Waterkloof continued their good run in the Coca-Cola® Schools T20 Challenge by winning the Multiply Titans franchise final at Willowmoore Park in Benoni on the 2nd March. They will once again represent the Titans in the National Finals that they won in 2011. The schools that took part in the Franchise final were Northerns: Hoërskool Waterkloof, Mpumalanga: Cambridge Academy, Limpopo: Hoërskool Ben Vorster and Easterns: Hoërskool Marais Viljoen.
Cambridge Academy from Witbank won the toss and sent Hoërskool Waterkloof into bat in the final. Waterkloof got off to a magnificent start and batted at over 10 runs an over throughout their innings. Jordan Herman with 73 and S Kemp with 48 runs got the team to a mammoth 212/5 in their allotted 20 overs. Ricus Kram was the pick of the bowlers with 2/39.
Cambridge’s run chase did not start well as they lost wickets very quickly up front. Wesley Vayani and Stefan Leemans tried to recover the innings and when Wesley went out Rocco Gomes continued the recovery with Leemans. In the end, Cambridge fell short by scoring only 90 all out with Leemans being the top batsman with 35 runs. Hoërskool Waterkloof won by 122 runs.
Waterkloof captain Jordan Hermann said: “Coca-Cola Schools T20 is a great tournament that allows us to play against schools that we don’t normally get a chance to play against and to play on larger fields so we can work on other parts to our game.” He concluded: “Today we upped our game and focused on starting slowly and building an innings. That is where we have improved the most since the Northerns Provincial Final.”
All is not lost for two of the Cambridge players, as they have been picked for the Coca-Cola® All-Star team that will take part in the National Finals. Wali Vayani was picked for his match=winning 59* in the semi-finals and Zuan Swart was picked as a leg spinner by Proteas legend Paul Harris.
Vuyani said: “To make the Coca-Cola® All-Star team is a good opportunity for me to play with players that I normally don’t have a chance to play with. I can measure myself to see how I perform compared to players from the rest of the country.” Zuan Swart also shared his thoughts: “I think that I will have a good opportunity to improve my game by playing with other players from the Coca-Cola® All-Star team.”
Paul Harris commented on what he witnessed at the finals and the two players that he chose for the Coca-Cola® All-Star team. “I was impressed by the performance of all the teams today. Waterkloof have shown that they are going to be a force at the Coca-Cola® T20 Challenge National Finals. The teams are proving to want to be the best in the country.”
The Coca-Cola® All-Star team will get to meet the other qualifying teams, have coaching sessions with Paul Harris and play against a Cricket South Africa hubs selection side as a curtain-raiser to the final of the Coca-Cola® T20 Schools Challenge.
Hoërskool Waterkloof will represent the Titans and they will join the other five franchises winners and the two schools that qualified through the CSA Focus School programme at the competition’s National Finals at the University of Pretoria from the 15th to 17th March. The eventual winners stand to walk off with R110 000 for their school.
Marais Viljoen 124 all out (Henko Black 30, Jason van Dyk 28, Uzar Vayani 3/24, Zuan Swart 2/18) vs Cambridge 126/6 (Wali Vayani 59, Henko Black 2/24)
Cambridge won by 4 wickets
Waterkloof 187/9 (Jordan Hermann 55, Wehan van Rooyen 29, Ernst van der Schyff 3/28) vs Ben Vorster 89/9 (Cobus Geldenhuys 32, Hardus Coetzer 3/8, Om Thakar 3/17)
Waterkloof won by 98 runs
Waterkloof 212/5 (Jordan Hermann 73, SW Kemp 48) vs Cambridge 90 all out (Stefan Leemans 35, Simeon de Bruyn 3/9, Adi Mosehla 3/13)
Waterkloof won by 122 runs
Hannes Nienaber covered schools’ rugby in South Africa for Volksblad, Beeld, and Rapport for 11 years. He also created the biggest school rugby website in South Africa – School of Rugby – back in 2007. It eventually morphed into Supersport Schools Plus. He still occasionally milks cows.