Tour of South Africa

12 February 2018

A round up of night one and day two of our tour to South Africa.



Before we embark on Day 2 a little word about Night 1…..because sleep started later than expected and this resulted in the “Prank Calls Run” that occurred at training the next morning. Overnight some of the players thought it a fair ruse to inform other players via the hotel telephone system that amongst other things there was robbery going on and that Donald Trump was intending to bomb the hotel. Unfortunately for some of the players one of the prank calls was answered by the Head Coach …..and was not thrown by the caller claiming to be the Hotel Receptionist!


In the morning the players had a training session including the run for many but also a bit of bowling and fielding followed by a six a side football match (2-2 draw). Some parents went to the gym at the hotel ( broken machinery) and runs and walks up and down the beach before we all met at 12:10 sharp to head for Stellenbosch for our fixture vs Bridge House. There was a venue change from the school because the drought has rendered the school’s beautiful home ground unplayable…. a pity but totally understandable and we were all grateful to Bridge House for making the effort to find another venue.


The Distillery ground while a little industrial had a goodish hard wicket and was not without charm. Parents settled themselves under a lovely large shady tree with a coolbox of drinks and packed lunches. The new venue precipitated a late arrival from our opponents and the game started at 3pm.



Barney Norman skippered (a tradition that the son of the regular Match Manager takes the reins for the first game of the Tour)….lost the Toss and we fielded. Bridge House were an U13 team and they started quickly. Jasmine Sharp bowled tidily and with a bit of pace but it was Tom Carroll who came on first change who made the break through as he bowled fast and accurately and he ended up with 3 wickets in Bridge House’s 177-5 off 25 overs.


It was now our turn to bat and Jai Gupta and Amaan Mathur gave the team a great start putting on 33 for the first wicket in 5 overs giving us a solid base to attack what was an imposing total. However as is often the case a spinner can halt progress and suddenly we were finding it hard to get the ball through the infield while losing wickets. Poor Raul V-Pigem got run out second ball but he has now used up his bad luck for the Tour. The players never threw it away though and we ended up making 108-5 off 25 overs. Special mention to AmaanMathur who carried his bat… making 44 not out.


There is certainly something to build on as the team gave away a total of 57 extras including 33 ‘wides’ (which produces an extra ball for the opposition). This has a big impact on not only the total of the opposition but our belief as a batting team to reach such an inflated totalIf we at least halved that amount of extras then the team would have spent their innings believing they were in reach of the target….as it was it was always a little beyond the horizon.


After a generous spirited ceremony we decamped to Franschoek to the “The Station’ for Steaks, Shakes & Pinotage. Everyone was hungry and had a good dinner. Back on the coach where upon arrival at the Hotel sleepy players were given instructions including being told of their early start the next day (6am).

One particular parent was given an instruction about the coolbox which he singularly failed to complete and as result the parents today will probably have warm water……gulp ! Apologies!