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Tuesday, July 23, 2024
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08 Jul 2024
Red-ball head coach Shukri Conrad has unveiled the 16-player squad set to take on the West Indies in a two-match Test series starting 07 August in Trinidad and Tobago.

Red-ball head coach Shukri Conrad has unveiled the 16-player squad set to take on the West Indies in a two-match Test series starting 07 August in Trinidad and Tobago.

Among the highlights is the maiden Test call-up for Dafabet Warriors batter Matthew Breetzke. Breetzke earned his place after a stellar domestic four-day season, amassing 322 runs at an average of 46, including a top score of 188. As captain of the Warriors, he also led South Africa A in a four-day match against India A in December.

Wicket-keeper batter Ryan Rickelton returns to the red-ball setup for the first time since the Proteas hosted the West Indies in March 2023. Meanwhile, all-rounder Marco Jansen has been rested for this series to allow for a conditioning period aimed at ensuring his optimal physical and mental well-being after a demanding season.

This Test series, part of the ICC World Test Championship, marks South Africa’s first return to the Caribbean since their 2-0 series win in June 2021.

Coach Conrad expressed his enthusiasm, stating, "We are excited to return to Test cricket after a busy period of limited-overs matches. This tour is crucial for us as we aim to improve our standing in the ICC World Test Championship. We've selected our strongest possible squad and look forward to strong performances in the Caribbean. Matthew Breetzke joins us after an excellent past season, and we've decided to rest Marco Jansen for his long-term well-being."

Half of the squad will attend a red-ball camp in Durban next week as part of their preparation.

Proteas Test Squad Against West Indies:

Temba Bavuma* (captain, DP World Lions)
David Bedingham (World Sports Betting Western Province)
Matthew Breetzke* (Dafabet Warriors)
Nandre Burger (World Sports Betting Western Province)
Gerald Coetzee (Momentum Multiply Titans)
Tony de Zorzi* (World Sports Betting Western Province)
Keshav Maharaj (Hollywoodbets Dolphins)
Aiden Markram (Momentum Multiply Titans)
Wiaan Mulder* (DP World Lions)
Lungi Ngidi* (Momentum Multiply Titans)
Dane Paterson* (World Sports Betting Western Province)
Dane Piedt (Knights)
Kagiso Rabada (DP World Lions)
Tristan Stubbs* (Dafabet Warriors)
Ryan Rickelton (DP World Lions)
Kyle Verreynne* (World Sports Betting Western Province)
*These players will attend a red-ball camp from 15 – 19 July in Durban.

The squad will assemble in Trinidad and Tobago on 27 July, with players participating in the Major League Cricket final on 28 July joining the squad on 29 July.

Tour Itinerary:

Warm-up Match:

31 July – 03 August at 10:00 local time
West Indies Invitational XI vs South Africa – Brian Lara Cricket Academy, Trinidad and Tobago
Test Series:

07 – 11 August at 10:00 local time
West Indies vs South Africa – Queen’s Park Oval, Trinidad and Tobago

15 – 19 August at 10:00 local time
West Indies vs South Africa – Guyana National Stadium, Guyana
[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]

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08 Jul 2024
With just 16 days left before rugby sevens ignites the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, World Rugby and the Paris 2024 Organizing Committee have unveiled the much-anticipated match schedule.

With just 16 days left before rugby sevens ignites the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, World Rugby and the Paris 2024 Organizing Committee have unveiled the much-anticipated match schedule. The Stade de France, fresh from hosting the Rugby World Cup 2023 final, is set to welcome 69,000 fans per session, showcasing the electrifying sport that has captivated audiences worldwide.

Men’s Tournament: A Battle for Glory

The men’s competition kicks off on 24 July, with a thrilling opener between Australia and Samoa. Hosts France, inspired by the formidable Antoine Dupont, face the USA, while reigning Olympic champions Fiji challenge the debutant Uruguay team. The competition will continue over three days, culminating on 27 July with the first team sport gold medal of the Games.

Women’s Tournament: Champions Collide

On 28 July, the women’s tournament begins with Ireland taking on Great Britain. Defending champions New Zealand will battle it out with Challenger champions China, and SVNS Grand Final champions Australia clash with South Africa. The women’s matches promise to be as gripping as the men’s, leading up to their final on 30 July.

A Global Showcase at Stade de France

The Stade de France will once again become the epicenter of rugby excitement, as fans from all over the world gather to witness this high-paced, action-packed sport. The format includes three pool matches for each team, with the top eight advancing to the quarter-finals, setting the stage for intense semi-finals and the crowning of new Olympic champions.

World Rugby’s Vision

World Rugby Chief Executive Alan Gilpin expressed his enthusiasm: “The unveiling of the match schedule is another exciting step towards Paris 2024. This edition promises to be the sport’s ‘coming of age’ with packed stands and a worldwide audience, showcasing the speed, strength, and skill of rugby sevens.”

A Nation’s Pride

Paris 2024’s Executive Director of Sport Competitions, Aurélie Merle, added: “Rugby sevens will kick off the Olympic Games, and the atmosphere inside Stade de France will be electric. With passionate crowds and thrilling match-ups, the stage is set for an unforgettable experience for athletes and fans alike.”

As teams finalize their preparations, the world eagerly awaits the clash of rugby titans in Paris. The stage is set, the schedule is locked, and the countdown has begun for what promises to be a historic chapter in Olympic rugby sevens.
[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]

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08 Jul 2024
This past weekend, Loftus was alive with the spirit of victory and pride as UFC star Dricus Du Plessis electrified the crowd with his famous words, "Hulle Weet Nie Waat Ons Weet" ("They Don't Know What We Know").

This past weekend, Loftus was alive with the spirit of victory and pride as UFC star Dricus Du Plessis electrified the crowd with his famous words, "Hulle Weet Nie Waat Ons Weet" ("They Don't Know What We Know"). These words, which have become a rallying cry for South Africans, perfectly encapsulate the determination and resilience that define our beloved Springboks.

Dricus, who earned his shot at the UFC middleweight title after a stunning TKO against Robert Whittaker in July 2023, explained the deeper meaning behind his statement. "Even though we’re underdogs, and we don’t have what all these big countries have, we face challenges head-on. People don’t know what we are willing to do to win and how far we are willing to go to be the best. We saw that with the Springboks. They don’t know what we as South Africans know—we are built different."

So, what do the Springboks know that the world doesn’t? What’s the secret behind their unparalleled success?

Firstly, Depth in Talent- the Springboks have built an exceptional squad where every position boasts three to four world-class players. This depth is so profound that even a C team, composed of World Cup winners, could be fielded. Such strategic planning ensures sustained excellence and adaptability, making the Springboks a formidable force.

Secondly, Hunger for Legacy- post-World Cup transitions typically see a shake-up in the squad, but not for the 2023 Springboks. Retaining core players who still have an insatiable hunger to win and make history, they showed an unwavering commitment to continuity and passion. With only the head coach and one player moving on, the transition was seamless. Players like Willie Le Roux exemplify this dedication, ready to play until explicitly told otherwise.

Lastly, Resilience and Adaptability- the Springboks' journey is a testament to resilience. From the depths of despair and public scorn in 2017 to World Cup champions within two years, their story showcases how small, strategic changes can lead to massive results. Their belief and minor adjustments have turned them into one of the greatest teams in the game.

This weekend’s event, hosted by the Springboks and Vodacom Bulls at Loftus, was unforgettable. The crowd’s impassioned rendition of the national anthem and the team’s sheer excellence on the field highlighted why the Springboks are revered worldwide.

The Springboks’ story is a masterclass in resilience, strategic depth, and an unyielding hunger for excellence. They don’t just play the game—they redefine it.
[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]


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08 Jul 2024
This past weekend, Loftus was alive with the spirit of victory and pride as UFC star Dricus Du Plessis electrified the crowd with his famous words, "Hulle Weet Nie Waat Ons Weet" ("They Don't Know What We Know").

This past weekend, Loftus was alive with the spirit of victory and pride as UFC star Dricus Du Plessis electrified the crowd with his famous words, "Hulle Weet Nie Waat Ons Weet" ("They Don't Know What We Know"). These words, which have become a rallying cry for South Africans, perfectly encapsulate the determination and resilience that define our beloved Springboks.

Dricus, who earned his shot at the UFC middleweight title after a stunning TKO against Robert Whittaker in July 2023, explained the deeper meaning behind his statement. "Even though we’re underdogs, and we don’t have what all these big countries have, we face challenges head-on. People don’t know what we are willing to do to win and how far we are willing to go to be the best. We saw that with the Springboks. They don’t know what we as South Africans know—we are built different."

So, what do the Springboks know that the world doesn’t? What’s the secret behind their unparalleled success?

1. Depth in Talent
The Springboks have built an exceptional squad where every position boasts three to four world-class players. This depth is so profound that even a C team, composed of World Cup winners, could be fielded. Such strategic planning ensures sustained excellence and adaptability, making the Springboks a formidable force.

2. Hunger for Legacy
Post-World Cup transitions typically see a shake-up in the squad, but not for the 2023 Springboks. Retaining core players who still have an insatiable hunger to win and make history, they showed an unwavering commitment to continuity and passion. With only the head coach and one player moving on, the transition was seamless. Players like Willie Le Roux exemplify this dedication, ready to play until explicitly told otherwise.

3. Resilience and Adaptability
The Springboks' journey is a testament to resilience. From the depths of despair and public scorn in 2017 to World Cup champions within two years, their story showcases how small, strategic changes can lead to massive results. Their belief and minor adjustments have turned them into one of the greatest teams in the game.

This weekend’s event, hosted by the Springboks and Vodacom Bulls at Loftus, was unforgettable. The crowd’s impassioned rendition of the national anthem and the team’s sheer excellence on the field highlighted why the Springboks are revered worldwide.

The Springboks’ story is a masterclass in resilience, strategic depth, and an unyielding hunger for excellence. They don’t just play the game—they redefine it.
[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]

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02 Jul 2024
In the world of sports, there comes a time when one must simply tip their hat and acknowledge the better team.

In the world of sports, there comes a time when one must simply tip their hat and acknowledge the better team. The team that stands victorious at the end is often the one that best navigates the narrow margins that define the game. We saw this at the 2023 Rugby World Cup, where despite Europe's belief in France and Ireland as the superior teams, they walked away empty-handed. It’s a reminder that sport is a game of fine margins – sometimes they fall in your favour, and other times they do not. Sometimes you sit back after 48 hours and think, how did we lose that. Well it happens.

India boasts incredible players capable of changing the game in an instant. Jasprit Bumrah, with the ball in hand, is nothing short of a magician. He’s like a lifeline in a game show, reserved for the most critical moments. In the recent T20 World Cup final against South Africa, Bumrah’s brilliance was a game-changer. Despite Heinrich Klaasen’s impressive assault on Axar Patel, Bumrah's strategic deployment turned the tide. A timely timeout orchestrated by Rishabh Pant disrupted Klaasen's momentum, leading to his dismissal and exposing South Africa's lower order.

Aiden Markram’s post-match reflection, “It is better to be fully committed to a bad plan than uncommitted to a good plan,” speaks volumes within the cricketing community. The Proteas stuck to their strategy, but fortune did not favor them. Bumrah and Arshdeep Singh’s extraordinary bowling sealed India’s victory, mirroring South Africa’s earlier narrow escapes against Bangladesh and Nepal.

South Africans, like fans worldwide, rally around winners but also harshly critique defeats. This does not make the team chokers or losers, but rather brave warriors who fought till the end. It’s time to move beyond the "choke" label. Every team faces this challenge, and the critical factor is whether it’s the occasion’s weight or a superior opponent’s relentless pressure that leads to a fall.

David Miller, South Africa's most seasoned player in this World Cup, epitomizes the team’s spirit. Known for his powerful hitting, Miller has taken on greater responsibility over the years. His anguish after the final over, where he aimed for a match-winning six, told the story of a player feeling he had let his team down. At 35, Miller may not get another shot at World Cup glory, joining the ranks of South African cricketers who came close but never clinched the trophy.

Despite the defeat, South Africa's journey was noteworthy. Their unbeaten streak in the tournament and their valiant final performance were commendable. The focus now shifts to how they will progress. Former stars like Dale Steyn, Graeme Smith, and Shaun Pollock were clearly devastated after the loss. A win for this Proteas team would have been a win for them too. Guidance from ex-coach Russell Domingo, former captain Hashim Amla, and former allrounder Chris Morris suggests a roadmap: embrace the sadness, navigate the lows, and seek the positives.

Domingo, who experienced similar heartbreak in the 2015 World Cup semi-final, understands the emotional toll. He has admitted waking up several times at night thinking about his teams loss and what they could have done differently. Cricket can be cruel, even in the best of times. South Africa’s upcoming Test series in the West Indies and limited-overs assignments will test their resilience. The team boasts a bright future with young talents like Tristan Stubbs and Aiden Markram, who have gained invaluable experience in international leagues and domestic cricket.

Amla’s pragmatic approach emphasizes that success must be earned. Nothing is ever owed, and that’s what makes sport great. South Africa’s strong player pipeline produces individuals capable of thriving under pressure. The team’s performance in close matches and their dominant semi-final victory provide reasons for optimism. While the final loss might be seen as a choke, it also highlighted the brilliance of India’s bowlers, Rohit’s calm head and captaincy, and Suryakumar Yadav’s spectacular catch at a crucial time.

This World Cup journey adds another chapter to South Africa’s rich, and at times devastating and sad cricketing World Cup history. It has however been a tale of resilience, heartbreak, and the unyielding pursuit of glory. As Hashim Amla aptly put it, “The final has come now; the trophy's coming next.” South Africa will continue to chase that elusive title, driven by the hope and determination that define their cricketing ethos.

South Africa’s World Cup journey may have ended in heartbreak, but their spirit remains unbroken. The adversities faced will only make them stronger. The hope may be painful, but it will make the eventual victory even sweeter. Perhaps, in 2027, South Africa will lift their first trophy on home soil. Until then, the hope for a brighter future, both in cricket and beyond, endures.
[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]

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01 Jul 2024
In a dramatic, nail-biting showdown at Kensington Oval, Barbados, India claimed their second T20 World Cup title after a nail-biting encounter against South Africa.

In a dramatic, nail-biting showdown at Kensington Oval, Barbados, India claimed their second T20 World Cup title after a nail-biting encounter against South Africa. The match, hailed as a battle of nerves, showcased India's grit and South Africa's resilience in equal measure, culminating in a thrilling finish that left fans on the edge of their seats.
India, known for their consistent performances yet haunted by the "chokers" tag in crucial finals, faced off against a South African side equally determined to shed their own reputation. The Proteas, making their sixth finals appearance without a win, were eager to rewrite history against a formidable Indian lineup.

From the onset, it was evident this clash would be a test of skill and temperament. After winning the toss and electing to bat, India set a challenging target of 176 runs, bolstered by a commanding 76-run innings from Virat Kohli. However, South Africa's response was fierce, especially with Heinrich Klaasen's explosive 52 off 27 balls steering their chase.

As the match approached its climax, with South Africa needing 30 runs from 30 balls, the momentum swung back and forth. Jasprit Bumrah emerged as India's hero, delivering crucial overs under pressure. His strategic brilliance was evident when he conceded only six runs in two critical overs, denting South Africa's chase just as it gathered steam.
In the 16th and 18th overs, Bumrah's precision bowling turned the tide decisively in India's favor. With the Proteas needing 30 runs off the final 18 balls, Bumrah's economy and Suryakumar Yadav's breathtaking catch to dismiss David Miller breathed new life into India's campaign. Captain Rohit Sharma's bold decision to trust Bumrah with the crucial 18th over paid off handsomely, as the Proteas faltered under mounting pressure.

With South Africa requiring 16 runs from the last over, all eyes were on Hardik Pandya. A tense moment ensued as Kagiso Rabada struck a massive blow off the first ball, sending it soaring towards long off. However, Yadav's acrobatic catch on the boundary, followed by Pandya's composed finish, sealed India's victory by seven runs.
As the Indian team erupted in jubilation, Bumrah, named Player of the Match, reflected on his team's journey to reclaim the trophy after 17 years. "We play for these big moments," he remarked, emphasizing the team's clarity and composure during crunch situations.

Despite the heartbreak, South African captain Aiden Markram praised his team's resilience and competitive spirit. "It proves we are worthy finalists," he remarked, acknowledging the team's effort despite falling short in the final moments.

In a contest defined by high stakes and dramatic twists, India emerged as deserving champions, showcasing not just their cricketing prowess but also their ability to deliver under pressure. As the celebrations echoed through Kensington Oval, this victory marked a significant milestone in India's cricketing history, underscoring their dominance on the world stage.

It may have had its problems with weather, ticket prices, logistics and some one sided matches however the T20 World Cup tournament of 2024 will be remembered not just for the cricketing spectacle it offered but also for the resilience, determination, and unforgettable moments that defined it.

[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]

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30 Jun 2024
The stage is set for an exhilarating showdown as South Africa and India prepare to face off in the final of the T20 World Cup 2024 at the iconic Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados.

The stage is set for an exhilarating showdown as South Africa and India prepare to face off in the final of the T20 World Cup 2024 at the iconic Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados. This historic match, taking place on June 29, marks the first time the two teams will meet in the final of a men’s ICC tournament, promising a clash of the two most in-form teams of the competition.

Road to the Final
Both teams have showcased remarkable performances throughout the tournament, remaining unbeaten in their respective campaigns. South Africa emerged victorious in all eight of their matches, while India, despite a washout against Canada, have maintained a flawless record in their seven encounters.

South Africa’s journey to the final saw them triumph over Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Netherlands, and Nepal in the group stage, followed by wins against the USA and England in the Super Eight. They faced a critical match against West Indies, securing a narrow three-wicket win in a rain-shortened game. In the semi-final, South Africa delivered a commanding performance, defeating Afghanistan by nine wickets.

India’s path was equally impressive. They started with wins over Ireland, Pakistan, and the USA, before their match against Canada was washed out. Dominant victories against Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Australia followed in the Super Eight. In the semi-final, India outclassed England with a 68-run victory, thanks to stellar performances from captain Rohit Sharma and bowler Suryakumar Yadav.

Historical Significance
For South Africa, this final represents a historic moment. It is their first appearance in the final of a men’s World Cup, both ODI and T20, marking a significant milestone in their cricketing history. The Proteas have come close on numerous occasions, reaching the semi-finals in five ODI World Cups and two T20 World Cups, but this is their first shot at the ultimate prize.

India, on the other hand, seeks to end a decade-long ICC trophy drought. Since winning the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007 and the ODI World Cup in 2011, India has come close but fallen short in several ICC tournaments. This final offers a chance to redeem themselves and add another T20 World Cup title to their storied legacy.

Conditions and Weather
The Kensington Oval has hosted eight matches in this tournament, with teams batting first winning the majority. However, with wind gusts predicted at 35-45 km/h and possible showers, weather conditions might play a crucial role. According to forecasts, there is a significant chance of rain, with a 50% likelihood in the morning and 30% around the scheduled toss time. There is a reserve day allotted for the final, ensuring every effort will be made to complete the match and crown a winner.

Key Players
India’s probable XI includes stars like Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, and Jasprit Bumrah, whose performances have been instrumental in their journey to the final. South Africa’s lineup features Quinton de Kock, Aiden Markram, and Kagiso Rabada, who have been pivotal in their unbeaten run.

The Final Showdown
As the two cricketing giants prepare for the ultimate battle, fans around the world anticipate a thrilling encounter. India’s experience and momentum will be pitted against South Africa’s hunger and form. With both teams vying for the prestigious T20 World Cup title, the final promises to be a spectacle of cricketing excellence.

Who will emerge victorious? Will India reclaim their T20 World Cup glory, or will South Africa lift their maiden World Cup trophy? All eyes will be on the Kensington Oval as the world watches this historic final unfold.

Photo: ICC/ GETTY
[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]


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24 Jun 2024
In a thrilling spectacle at Loftus Versfeld, the Glasgow Warriors were crowned the 2024 United Rugby Championship champions, staging an unforgettable comeback to defeat the Vodacom Bulls 21-16.

In a thrilling spectacle at Loftus Versfeld, the Glasgow Warriors were crowned the 2024 United Rugby Championship champions, staging an unforgettable comeback to defeat the Vodacom Bulls 21-16. The Scottish side, who came in as underdogs, defied expectations and clinched their second URC title in a match that left fans on the edge of their seats.

First-Half Drama: Bulls Dominate Early

The Bulls, fresh off a semifinal victory over Leinster, started strong. Within the first two minutes, Johan Goosen’s penalty put them on the scoreboard, followed by another successful kick. The home side extended their lead when Marco van Staden powered through for a try, converted by Goosen, making it 13-0. Glasgow's initial attempts to retaliate were thwarted, with Rory Darge's heroic defense holding up Wilco Louw just short of the line.

However, the tide began to turn as halftime approached. Scott Cummings scored a crucial try for Glasgow, converted by George Horne, narrowing the gap to 13-7.

Second-Half Surge: Glasgow Takes Control

The second half saw a resilient Glasgow team returning to the field. Despite a nervous start, they regrouped quickly. A penalty by Goosen momentarily extended the Bulls' lead to 16-7, but Glasgow struck back immediately. George Turner, playing his final game before moving to Japan, scored from a well-executed maul, and Horne's conversion brought them within two points.

Glasgow seized the momentum when Huw Jones finished off a brilliant team play, putting the Warriors ahead for the first time. Despite a disallowed try by Jack Dempsey due to a foul, Glasgow maintained their composure. A high tackle by Tom Jordan resulted in a yellow card, adding late drama as the Bulls sought to exploit their numerical advantage.

Final Moments: Warriors Hold Firm

In a tense finale, the Bulls pushed hard but were unable to break through Glasgow's staunch defense. The Warriors, playing at altitude and in front of a fervent Pretoria crowd, showcased their resilience and tactical acumen, securing a famous victory.

Man of the Match: Matt Fagerson

Matt Fagerson's outstanding performance, marked by 15 tackles and key offloads, earned him the Man of the Match honor. His relentless effort epitomized Glasgow’s tenacity throughout the game.

Post-Match Reactions: Bulls' Introspection

A dejected Jake White, coach of the Vodacom Bulls, reflected on the missed opportunity and vowed to return stronger. "We missed an opportunity tonight," White admitted, expressing his disappointment at losing another final. He emphasized the need for introspection and growth, acknowledging the experience and resilience of Glasgow's seasoned players.

Glasgow’s Rise: Coach Franco Smith’s Vision

Glasgow head coach Franco Smith praised his team’s execution and resilience, highlighting their strategic planning and mental toughness. "This team shouldn’t be done after tonight," Smith declared, looking forward to future successes. The victory marked a significant milestone for Glasgow, solidifying their status as a formidable force in the URC.

The Glasgow Warriors’ 21-16 victory over the Bulls in the URC final was a testament to their resilience, strategic brilliance, and unwavering spirit. Overcoming early setbacks and intense pressure, they emerged victorious, leaving a lasting impression on fans and setting a high standard for future competitions. The Bulls, despite their loss, demonstrated remarkable potential and commitment, promising an exciting future in the championship.

The scorers:

For Bulls:
Try: Van Staden
Con: Goosen
Pens: Goosen 3

For Glasgow Warriors:
Tries: Cummings, Turner, Jones
Cons: Horne 3

Yellow card: Tom Jordan (Glasgow Warriors, 77 – high tackle)

Teams:

Bulls: 15 Devon Williams, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 David Kriel, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Kurt-Lee Arendse, 10 Johan Goosen, 9 Embrose Papier, 8 Cameron Hanekom, 7 Elrigh Louw, 6 Marco van Staden, 5 Ruan Nortje (captain), 4 Ruan Vermaak, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Johan Grobbelaar, 1 Gerhard Steenekamp.
Replacements: 16 Akker van der Merwe, 17 Simpiwe Matanzima, 18 Francois Klopper, 19 Reinhardt Ludwig, 20 Nizaam Carr, 21 Zak Burger, 22 Chris Smith, 23 Cornel Smit.

Glasgow Warriors: 15 Josh McKay, 14 Sebastian Cancelliere, 13 Huw Jones, 12 Sione Tuipulotu, 11 Kyle Steyn (captain), 10 Tom Jordan, 9 George Horne, 8 Jack Dempsey, 7 Rory Darge, 6 Matt Fagerson, 5 Scott Cummings, 4 Richie Gray, 3 Zander Fagerson, 2 Johnny Matthews, 1 Jamie Bhatti.
Replacements: 16 George Turner, 17 Nathan McBeth, 18 Oli Kebble, 19 Max Williamson, 20 Euan Ferrie, 21 Henco Venter, 22 Jamie Dobie, 23 Duncan Weir.

Referee: Andrea Piardi (Italy)

[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]

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23 Jun 2024
Cricket enthusiasts, mark your calendars!

Cricket enthusiasts, mark your calendars! Cricket South Africa was thrilled to announce the much-anticipated KFC T20 International (T20I) series, where India will tour South Africa in November 2024. This series promises to deliver top-tier cricket and fierce competition, showcasing the exceptional talent of both nations.

The four-match series will kick off on Friday, 8 November, at the iconic Hollywoodbets Kingsmead Stadium in Durban. The action then moves to Gqeberha, with Dafabet St George’s Park hosting the second match on Sunday, 10 November. The excitement continues as the series shifts to the highveld, with SuperSport Park in Centurion set for Wednesday, 13 November. The grand finale will take place at DP World Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg on Friday, 15 November.

Tickets for this thrilling series go on sale on 19 August, so be sure to secure your spot to witness these cricketing giants in action.

Cricket South Africa (CSA) Chairperson, Mr. Lawson Naidoo, expressed his gratitude towards the BCCI, stating, "I would like to thank the BCCI for their continued support to South Africa’s cricket, and world cricket in general. Any tour by the Indian cricket team to our shores is filled with amazing camaraderie and exciting cricket, and I know our fans will be eagerly awaiting this series which will showcase the exceptional talent from both teams.”

Echoing this sentiment, Mr. Jay Shah, Honorary Secretary of the BCCI, remarked, "India and South Africa have always shared a deep and strong bond, one that both nations take great pride in. The Indian Cricket Team has consistently received immense appreciation and love from South African fans, and this sentiment is equally strong among Indian fans towards the South African side. I am confident that the upcoming series will once again highlight the on-field cricketing excellence and deliver enthralling, high-intensity contests."

The upcoming KFC T20I series is set to be a riveting showcase of cricketing prowess, with fans eagerly anticipating the clash between these two global cricketing powerhouses.

South African Inbound Tour against India: KFC T20I Series

Friday, 8 November:
South Africa vs. India – Hollywoodbets Kingsmead Stadium, Durban

Sunday, 10 November:
South Africa vs. India - Dafabet St George’s Park, Gqeberha

Wednesday, 13 November:
South Africa vs. India – SuperSport Park, Centurion

Friday, 15 November:
South Africa vs. India – DP World Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg

Don't miss this electrifying series as South Africa and India battle it out on South African soil.

[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]

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23 Jun 2024
In a highly anticipated clash, the Glasgow Warriors and the Vodacom Bulls are set to battle for URC glory at a sold-out Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria this Saturday evening.

In a highly anticipated clash, the Glasgow Warriors and the Vodacom Bulls are set to battle for URC glory at a sold-out Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria this Saturday evening. The Warriors' head coach, Franco Smith, has chosen to stick with the same starting XV for the third consecutive week, demonstrating his confidence in the squad that defeated Munster last weekend at Thomond Park. This consistency is crucial as they face the formidable Bulls, who are bolstered by the return of their star winger, Kurt-Lee Arendse, following surgery.

Smith, known for his strategic squad rotation during the regular season, made only two changes to the bench. Nathan McBeth returns from concussion to provide loose-head cover, replacing Murphy Walker, while veteran Duncan Weir steps in for Ross Thompson, who has played his last game for the Warriors before moving to Edinburgh. Smith's approach reflects his commitment to fielding the best possible team for this decisive match.

"During the season, our objectives were to develop the squad and manage player fatigue," Smith explained. "Now, it's about having the best team out there. Every player knew they had to perform at their best to be part of this final. The selected players carry the responsibility of representing their teammates who didn't make the cut."

Reflecting on their preparation, Smith acknowledged the challenge ahead: "Last week, we faced 20,000 Irish supporters. This week, it's double that number. But our focus is on the task at hand, not the occasion. We need to elevate our performance to beat the Bulls."

On the other side, the Vodacom Bulls, led by coach Jake White, welcome back Kurt-Lee Arendse, whose recovery from a fractured cheekbone is a significant boost following the loss of fullback Willie le Roux. Devon Williams steps in as fullback, marking the only other change to the Bulls' starting XV.

White emphasized the importance of maintaining their form from the semi-final victory over Leinster. "There's no secret remedy. It's about doing what we did well last week and focusing on our strengths," he said. "We've grown as a team, learning from past experiences. Playing at a sold-out Loftus Versfeld will be special. The energy from 53,000 Bulls supporters will be incredible."

Despite their home advantage, White dismissed any notion of favoritism. "Favourites count for nothing in this competition. The Warriors are a strong team and we won’t underestimate them. It’s all about performing in those 80 minutes."

As both teams prepare for what promises to be a thrilling URC Grand Final, the stage is set for a captivating encounter. The Glasgow Warriors, led by Smith, will look to upset the Bulls in their own backyard, while the Bulls, energized by their passionate fans, aim to clinch the title.

Starting Line-ups:

Glasgow Warriors:
K J McKay; S Cancelliere, H Jones, S Tuipulotu, K Steyn ©; T Jordan, G Horne; J Bhatti, J Matthews, Z Fagerson, R Gray, S Cummings, M Fagerson, R Darge, J Dempsey.
Replacements: G Turner, N McBeth, O Kebble, M Williamson, E Ferrie, H Venter, J Dobie, D Weir.

Vodacom Bulls:

Gerhard Steenekamp, 2. Johan Grobbelaar, 3. Wilco Louw, 4. Ruan Vermaak, 5. Ruan Nortje (c), 6. Marco van Staden, 7. Elrigh Louw, 8. Cameron Hanekom, 9. Embrose Papier, 10. Johan Goosen, 11. Kurt-Lee Arendse, 12. Harold Vorster, 13. David Kriel, 14. Sergeal Petersen, 15. Devon Williams.
Replacements: Akker van der Merwe, Simphiwe Matanzima, Francois Klopper, Reinhardt Ludwig, Nizaam Carr, Zak Burger, Chris Smith, Cornel Smit.


Picture: Vodacom Bulls
[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]


     

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