26 February 2018. Cape Town-based Rondebosch Boys High and St Albans College from Pretoria have qualified to represent the Cobras and Titans at the Coca-Cola Schools T20 Challenge National Finals in March.
Rondebosch took on Outeniqua High School and Paul Roos Gymnasium in the Cobras Coca-Cola Schools T20 Challenge Franchise Finals at their home ground on Saturday, 23 January 2018. Outeniqua Paul Roos were no match for a well drilled Rondebosch team who had stand out performances by Reese Scheepers with the ball, Justin Broad and Quinton Oordt with the bat, and their wicket keeper Ethan Nates who made 3 stumpings and 2 runouts.
St Albans College were crowned the Titans franchise champions after beating Marais Viljoen High School.
Marais Viljoen won the toss and decided to bat first. The opening partnership of Neil Bothma (33 off 13 balls) and Liam Murphy (30 off 16 balls) got them off to a fast start. At one stage they had 62 runs off 5 overs. St Albans did not let the fast start get to them and started taking wickets at short intervals. Marais Viljoen only managed to add another 74 runs in the next 15 over to post 136/7. Like Marais Viljoen, St Albans openers got them off to a good start and chased down 137 to win in in 15.4 overs with the loss of only 3 wickets.During the two franchise finals, four players were selected to be part of the Coca-Cola T20 All-Star Team to take on the Cricket South Africa Development team at national finals. The new addition of the Coca-Cola Schools T20 Challenge is aimed at spreading the talent search net wider and will see a team of cricket experts attend all franchise finals in search of outstanding players in the teams that do not qualify for the national finals.
Outeniqua’s all-rounder, Matthew Thorn’s and Paul Roos’ batsman, Rudi Klaasen were selected during the Cobras Franchise Finals. Thorn’s performance with bat and ball and Klaasen’s batting display throughout the day impressed the Coca-Cola T20 All-Star selectors, earning them a spot in the team.
“I have mixed emotions today, on the one hand I am very happy that I was picked for the All-Star team but on the other hand I would have loved it if my school had qualified for the National Finals. It is now up to me to represent my school in a curtain-raiser at the Coca-Cola Schools T20 Challenge Finals,” said Matthew Thorn.
During the Titans Franchise Finals, Neil Bothma and Khaya Nyamathe from Marais Viljoen were selected for the Coca-Cola T20 All-Star team.
“It is a real honour to be picked to play in the Coca-Cola T20All-Star team. I am disappointed that we lost today but I am happy that cricket won the day,” said Khaya Nyamathe.
Neil Bothma, Khaya Nyamathe, Matthew Thorn and Rudi Klaasen join Mason Zacharea and Reeza Alexander, Matthew Montgomery and Simon Holmes in the Coca-Cola T20 All-Star team.
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