Get as close to the ball as possible and play it at the last moment – this has been the successful credo employed by the latest South African centurion – and it is a game plan that World Sports Betting Cape Cobras opening batsman Pieter Malan wants to borrow from Theunis de Bruyn when he represents South Africa ‘A’ in India in July and August.

Malan is one of two top-order batsmen from the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras who will represent South Africa ‘A’ against the India ‘A’ team in India. The other batting representative is Zubayr Hamza, while spinner Dane Piedt and fast bowler Mthiwekhaya Nabe complete the group of representatives from Cape Town heading over to India on Tuesday as part of the four-day squad.

Malan said he has taken some learnings about spinning conditions by watching the centurion De Bruyn score 101 in the second Test against Sri Lanka in Galle. It was De Bruyn’s first test ton.

“I don’t have a definite game plan whether to play on the front foot or back foot, but I know I must be clear in my decision making whether to go forward or backwards and commit myself with definite movement,” said Malan.

Although the conditions are tough and he has not played in India, he has played against spinners of international class which has helped him. The past season he represented the Cape side against Shaun von Berg and Tabraiz Shamsi – both of whom were in the Proteas touring test squad to Sri Lanka.

Hamza is looking forward to the tour but expects tough conditions: “It was beneficial to me that I went on the bowling and batting camp in India recently. I expect the conditions to be tough and I’ve decided that I want to get as close to the ball as possible when delivered by the Indian spinners. Or if I want to get out of the way, I need to be as far as possible from the ball.”

Malan and Hamza were part of the South Africa ‘A’ team that played against an Australian touring team last season and both have been heavy scorers for the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras.

Malan struck 892 runs at an average of 55.75, while Hamza hammered 828 runs at an average of 69 in the Sunfoil Series.

Malan also compiled 615 runs in the Momentum One Day Cup competition last season.

Ashwell Prince, the head coach of the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras, said he spoke to all the players on Monday and motivated them to adjust their game plans to the subcontinent as they will play half of their cricket against Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and India if they represent South Africa one day.

“We should not wish those conditions away, but formulate a game plan that makes us successful in foreign conditions,” he said.

“It is about learning as much as you can and adding to your skills set of playing spin to the rest of your game,” Prince said.

He said India has become the nation that has improved the most in foreign conditions while other nations, including South Africa, have gone backwards in foreign conditions recently.

Eddie Moore recorded his second successive century as the Warriors made a strong start to their Sunfoil Series encounter against the WSB Cape Cobras at St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth on Thursday.

The left-hander made exactly 100 (198 balls, 12 fours, 1 six) to help the hosts reach stumps on the opening day of the round two encounter on 263 for four.

It was Moore’s sixth first-class hundred and came hot on the heels of his fifth career ton, which came in the opening fixture of the season against the bizhub Highveld Lions in Johannesburg last week.

He put on 111 for the second wicket with Yaseen Vallie, who made 63 (159 balls, 9 fours), after the Warriors had won the toss and batted first.

Despite both falling, captain Jon-Jon Smuts was going strong at the close with an unbeaten 46.

His opposite number, Dane Piedt, was the most successful bowler after collecting three for 55.

If the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras regularly get off to a flyer and establish more first innings’ leads in four-day games, they will be difficult to stop.

The return of all-rounder Jason Smith also makes this team a better balanced unit for the Sunfoil Series clash against the Warriors at St. George’s Park in Port Elizabeth (starting on Thursday), said Dane Piedt, the skipper.

The tendency to play catch-up cricket has been a trait of the WSB Cape Cobras, and it is something the team is addressing in order to get their noses in front early in four-day games. If they do produce an early lead, they will be a more rampant force.

Speaking about their dismissal for a lowly 159 against the VKB Knights and how the team transformed their fortunes with a gritty performance from day two, Piedt said the WSB Cape Cobras is “built around character.”

The team showed little character on the first day and the coach, Ashwell Prince, expressed his dissatisfaction and anger about their display. They responded almost immediately and stood up to the challenges.

The current bowling attack is a young and inexperienced one and they must just find a way to capture 20 wickets in every match.

Smith has definitely picked up pace in the off-season and he will ensure it is a better-balanced bowling unit. Piedt said he thought Smith was a bit unlucky that he did not shave Wiaan Mulder for a position in the test squad (against Bangladesh).

“He is a bit of a maverick,” Piedt said about Smith, while referring to Smith’s aggressive and fearless approach to batting. He said in this regard, Smith reminds one a bit of Quinton de Kock.

He was disappointed in his own batting performances for the SA A team, but the presence of Prince as coach and Faiek Davids as assistant coach will aid Smith in knuckling down and improving his shot selection at number five, the skipper remarked.

Piedt said the absence of Vernon Philander and Wayne Parnell for the second match is almost a blessing in disguise because it forces the attack to be brutally honest about their own shortcomings and find a way to capture 20 wickets. “But we are moving in the right direction.”

Justin Ontong, who struck a magnificent 128 in the second innings in Bloemfontein, said the Cobras must learn as a batting unit.

“When we batted in the first innings, there were too many soft dismissals and at the wrong times,” he added.

Ontong said the collective reaction of the team will bolster their confidence ahead of the match against the Warriors.

Asked about his 128, one of the highlights of the WSB Cape Cobras’ heroic counter-offensive, Ontong said he knew they needed to bat for two days to save the match.

“So I had to reel in my natural instincts, but it helped to have a master batting with me in Hashim Amla,” added Ontong.

At the practice at PPC Newlands on Tuesday, quite a few senior players and the management team were excited about the performance by Kyle Verreynne, who mercilessly hooked and pulled the test fast bowler Duanne Olivier during his unbeaten 42 in Bloemfontein.

Piedt said one of the greatest characteristics of the new WSB Cape Cobras’ culture, is that players are given the confidence to walk out and express themselves.

WSB Cape Cobras Squad: Dane Piedt (Captain) Dayyaan Galiem, Zubayr Hamza, Simon Khomari, Pieter Malan, Aviwe Mgijima, Tshepo Moreki, Justin Ontong, Dane Paterson, Andrew Puttick, Jason Smith, Kyle Verreynne, Lizaad Williams


A technical adjustment in the off-season aided Andrew Puttick as the World Sports Betting (WSB) Cape Cobras opener struck a superb century in the two-day warm-up game against the Warriors in Oudtshoorn.

The WSB Cape Cobras skipper, Dane Piedt, led the way as they routed the visitors for 221 in their first innings. The experienced slow bowler nipped out 4-24 in ten overs of attacking off-spin, using a fourth-stump off-side line and letting it rip.

In response, Puttick hammered 100 off 170 balls with 12 fours and a six and shared in a 170-run opening partnership with Pieter Malan, who belted 72 off 149 balls. They set up a superb 354 for seven in the first innings.

The Warriors managed 96 for two in the second innings and the valuable warm-up match ended in a stalemate.

“In the off-season, Ashwell and I worked on my set-up and my alignment, and it worked as it transitioned into my batting very positively,” said Puttick.

“What I also liked, was that it was my first outdoor action since the winter.”

Prince said Puttick scored all around the ground, handled the short balls with aplomb and got himself into strong positions. “He moved forward beautifully and it will give him that feel-good factor before the season starts.

“Pieter (Malan) is an absolute machine. He is fit and strong,” Prince added.

Jason Smith also showed his fluency while compiling 55, said the coach.

Piedt was the leading wicket-taker for South Africa A against India A with nine scalps in the off-season.

Prince said Piedt and Dane Paterson bowled with good rhythm, a testimony to the fact that they have seen some outdoor action.

Piedt did not take his four wickets because the Warriors attempted to slog and holed out to the inner ring, explained Prince.

It was the result of attacking bowling, which saw him beat the bat with excellent deliveries. He removed one of the Warriors’ top batsmen, Jon-Jon Smuts on his way to 4-24.

Vernon Philander, who has captured 171 wickets in 46 tests for South Africa, is still not 100% match fit and the WSB Cape Cobras did not select him for the first warm-up games.

He won’t be ready for the second clash starting on Tuesday 12th September at the Recreation Oval in Oudtshoorn either.

The WSB Cape Cobras’ first Sunfoil Series match of the season commences on 19th September at the Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein against the VKB Knights.

South Africa will clash with the Bangladesh Tigers in a two-match test-series starting on 28th September.

The Buildnat Cape Cobras need to be less frantic at the start and the whole team must be more clinical in their pursuit of scores as 300 is no longer mission impossible in the Momentum One Day Cup competition, said Dane Piedt, the skipper, after the visitors lost by 100 runs to the VKB Knights at the Mangaung Oval in the opening match of the domestic 50-over showpiece on Saturday.

Theunis de Bruyn smashed 132 to catapult the hosts to 308 for six.

The visitors were dismissed for 208, despite a defiant 51 by Aviwe Mgijima.

“I think we must be less frantic, buckle up and the top six must accept that other teams will come hard at them. Yet, the Buildnat Cape Cobras can score 300 quite easily, but we had too many mediocre scores,” he said.

Piedt said the wicket was a bit up and down in terms of the pace and bounce at one end of the ground, which made scoring difficult.

He must give credit to the bowling attack who limited the VKB Knights to only 74 runs in the last ten overs.

But a key in a high-scoring match like that is that the Cobras require a solid base and wickets in hand. Instead, they went in pursuit of the total in frantic fashion and lost too many early wickets, which played into the hands of the Knights.

“We need to rectify this situation in our second match on Wednesday 22nd February at Buffalo Park against the Warriors,” said Piedt.

The Cobras utilized two spinners in the match against the VKB Knights and although that was not at the heart of their demise, the move did not exactly bringthe result the visitors were hoping for.

The Cobras also allowed De Lange to unnerve them with his short-pitched bowling, instead of keeping a calm head and waiting for the inevitable long hop or half volley by the fast and furious but slightly inconsistent fast bowler.

The Cobras lost their three first matches in 2012/2013, yet finished as the joint winner of the competition, something that should be slightly reassuring for the Cape champions.

The Buildnat Cape Cobras will be launching their Momentum One Day Cup campaign with a show of love for their fans on Tuesday 14th February, Valentine’s Day.

Along with their radio partners Heart FM, members of the Cape Cobras squad and coaching team will be driving around parts of Cape Town in branded cabs engaging with fans during Suga’s afternoon Drive 326 Show from 15h00-18h00.

Cape Cobras Brand and Sponsorship Manager David Brooke explains the campaign that will run from Tuesday until the end of the Momentum One Day Cup. “We all know that to swipe right or left on a certain dating app has specific meanings but what we are saying is that no matter what, when you match up the Cape Cobras squad and their fans, it’s always a perfect match.

“So, what better day to show the love to our fans, than on Valentine’s Day along with our new radio partners Heart FM. Along the route, the players will be handing out some spot prizes and tickets to our first home game which is on February 24 at PPC Newlands, so we urge fans to tune in to Heart FM to find out where we will be and we might even pay you a visit at your office or school.

“The branded cabs form part of our plans to be innovative in our marketing and exploring ideas outside of the traditional advertising space. They will continue to drive around Cape Town for the duration of the Momentum One Day Cup campaign and will serve to create awareness of our home matches at PPC Newlands and Boland Park, as well as boost the profiles of our players, especially the young guns, who are starting to make their mark on South African cricket.”

Heart FM Managing Director Renee Redelinghuys expressed her delight with the Cape Cobras partnership. “Heart FM is proud to be the official radio partner to the Cape Cobras. The partnership is a natural fit, as we share a passion for sport and the development thereof within our communities. We are passionate about families and about bringing people together. There is no better way to do that, than through the shared love of the game of cricket. We’re really looking forward to Tuesday’s launch with the squad and on behalf of the management of Heart FM, we’d like to convey our best wishes to the team for the rest of the season and seasons to follow,” she said.

Tune in to Heart FM throughout Valentine’s Day for all the #SwipeBlue details and tune in to Suga’s Drive 326 Show to hear how you can be part of The Perfect Match with the Cape Cobras.

Dane Piedt and Kyle Simmonds took all ten wickets in the second innings, for the BuildNat Cape Cobras to thrash the VKB Knights by 151 runs on the third afternoon of their Sunfoil Series match in Paarl on Saturday.

It’s been an incredible turnaround since Ashwell Prince took over from Paul Adams as head coach. They’ve now won three of their last four matches, and they’ve remarkably given themselves a chance of winning the Sunfoil Series title going into the final round of matches.

It was a tough blow for the Knights, who need to beat the Lions in their last game to stand a chance, while the Cobras will give themselves every opportunity if they can beat the Dolphins.

It was an impressive turnaround from the Cape-based outfit, who were bowled out for 154 in their first innings thanks to four-wicket hauls from Shadley van Schalkwyk and Duanne Olivier. But then the Cobras steamrolled the Knights for 153, bringing them right back into it.

An excellent century from Stiaan van Zyl (106) and a useful 62 from Dane Vilas guided the Cobras to 330, handing the Knights 332 for victory.

The Knights went into the second session of the third day in Paarl on 63-2, ensuring that it was anyone’s game to play for, but the spinners made light of work of it from there.

The crucial wicket was undoubtedly that of Theunis de Bruyn, who fell on the stroke of lunch. Simmonds, on franchise debut, was the man to get him for 12, before accounting for Pite van Biljon for a duck three balls after lunch.

Luthando Mnyanda provided some resilience with 57, but when the 50-run stand ended between him and Rudi Second, it became the Cobras’ match to lose.

Piedt would be the man to get Mnyanda, and the skipper dominated from there, taking four more wickets to finish with figures of 6-87. Simmonds backed up his three wickets from the first innings to bag 4-56 in the second, capping off an excellent debut for the youngster.

Piedt wrapped up the innings with the wicket of Van Schalkwyk for 31, leaving the Knights 151 runs short, concluding a brilliant comeback display from the Cobras.

Article source: SuperSport

The Sunfoil Series clash between the Buildnat Cape Cobras and the VKB Knights, the team at the summit of the four-day showpiece this season, starting at Boland Park on Thursday shapes as one of the most important matches for the hosts in the past three seasons, said Dane Piedt, the captain of the Cobras.

And there is nothing theatrical about the above-mentioned statement by the skipper.

“I told Ashwell Prince (the coach) before the start of the second half of the four-day series that if we win four out of the five matches, we can clinch the four-day title.

“And I still believe it,” he adds.

“The team is super motivated and we cannot wait to get started.

“The factors that could determine the outcome is that we should establish a 150-run partnership and two fifty-run partnerships to power the team to a big first innings total,” he said.

Piedt says one of the factors that have assisted the Cobras in becoming a title contender, is the support bowling.

“Jason Smith is very under estimated as a bowler. He bowls at 120 km/h, but he nips it around, swings it and his economy rate is between one and two an over.

“He helps to control the run rate.

“Tshepo Moreki has come on in leaps and bounds as a seam bowler. We have given every bowler a role and they have stuck to their guns,” Piedt said.

The role of Piedt will be important in the game. He captured 5-16 in the 2013/2014-season, including a hat-trick, at Boland Park and ended with 45 wickets in that season in eight matches.

If Piedt can return to his best, and Dane Paterson can strike repeatedly for the Cobras, the VKB Knights will be under pressure.

“One of the assets of the team has been that every bowler has contributed beautifully the past month without there being a standout bolwer, except in the case of Rory Kleinveldt against the Multiply Titans,” added Piedt.

The table-topping visitors boast several top class batsmen, including Theunis de Bruyn, who struck a double century on debut for South Africa A at Paarl.

He will be one of the primary targets of the Cobras in their quest to win their penultimate game of the Sunfoil Series season.

The Buildnat Cape Cobras squad is: Dane Piedt (capt), George F Linde, Aviwe Mgijima, Tshepo Moreki, Justin Ontong, Dane Paterson, Andrew Puttick, Omphile Ramela, Kyle Simmonds, Jason Smith, Stiaan van Zyl, Dane Vilas.

The worst soccer player in the Buildnat Cape Cobras team, but one of the most underrated limited overs bowlers in South Africa, is how Dane Piedt, skipper of the Cobras, light-heartedly describes his team-mate and fellow Manchester United supporter, Dane Paterson.

Paterson is on course to represent South Africa in the opening match of the T20 series against Sri Lanka at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Friday.

“He is a match winner,” says Piedt, a South African off-spinner and current Cobras’ captain. “He is the type of bowler who can capture 4-16 in a match to clinch it for you,” he said about the Buildnat Cape Cobras spearhead.

“Patto possesses a blue print for every spell. Dane is consistent, has the skills and adapts accordingly. He can bowl a consistent yorker, can swing it in the right conditions and can produce a very slippery bouncer,” he adds.

Vincent Barnes, CSA manager at the high performance centre, says Paterson is a very underrated bowler. He can operate in a Cobras attack with stars like Vernon Philander, Wayne Parnell and Rory Kleinveldt and doesn’t always receive the accolades and credit he deserves.

“Two seasons ago, he bowled with Hardus Viljoen, Marchant de Lange and Chris Morris for South Africa A against England A. The others are all world-class performers. But in that match, Dane was the most skilful of them all.
“He can bowl you cutters, yorkers, slower balls, whatever the situation demands in the shorter format. He deserves the call-up,” he added.

Paul Adams, the Western Cape High Performance Manager, said he worked with Paterson while he was the coach of the academy and saw him as a top performer who also represented Western Province.

When he came back from Natal, he performed for the Buildnat Cape Cobras occasionally, but really found his mojo in the 2014/2015-season when he captured 42 domestic wickets and also featured with 13 Ram Slam T20 Challenge scalps, including a match-winning 4-33 in the final.

“This season, he has performed very well in the power plays. On at least four occasions, he captured a wicket in the first over in the CSA T20 Challenge to put the Buildnat Cape Cobras on top,” Adams, who was instrumental in the resurrection of Paterson’s career, said.

Barnes said Paterson can easily bowl between 135 and 140 km/h but he is not a strike bowler in the 145 km/h or faster bracket.

It is rather the skills set and consistency that sets him apart.

Adams said Paterson has been unlucky on occasions as there has been international interest in his limited overs abilities but he hasn’t been able to take up the offers. One such occasion was when he was called up to the Jamaican Tallawahs, but could not represent them because he was on South Africa A duty.

A superb collective effort with the ball which caused a dramatic Warriors collapse from 237 for five to 260, was one of the highlights of the Buildnat Cape Cobras’ performance in a rain-curtailed Sunfoil Series clash at Buffalo Park in East London during the weekend.

Dane Piedt, the Buildnat Cape Cobras’ skipper, refused in typical humble fashion to take full credit for the collapse, which saw the hosts lose their final five wickets for the addition of only 23 runs in 7.4 overs of Cobras’ induced venom.

He captured 4-64 in 15.4 overs, while the recently selected South African T20 International bowler, Dane Paterson, accounted for 3-60.

“I actually just bowled consistently in the same area, and the frustrated batsmen, who were restricted by the accurate seam bowling, attempted aggressive shots against me and lost their wickets.

“Enormous credit must go to our bowling attack.

“I think going forward our support cast is so important. Usually Paterson and Rory Kleinveldt or Wayne Parnell bowl very well up front. But our support bowling need to keep the run-rate down in order to exert pressure which will bring wickets.

“And the support bowling by Jason Smith and Tshepo Moreki has been splendid,” he added.

The match between the Warriors and the Buildnat Cape Cobras finished in a stale draw after the Cobras had reached 71 for three in their second innings, an overall lead of 102 runs.

But the whole third day was abandoned due to rain which ruined the match as a spectacle from a purely cricket point of view (the farmers and the citizens of East London would no doubt have been delighted about the rain).

Piedt pointed to the inability of the Buildnat Cape Cobras to convert useful scores into substantial centuries, as the one shortcoming in the first innings. Six batsmen scored between 29 and 85 and a realistic case could be made that at least two of those useful contributors should have reached three figures.

“Yes, if we converted those scores, we could have easily slammed 350 to 400. We should have done that,” he added.

“You know what you are going to get out of Andrew Puttick. He will give it his whole-hearted commitment.”

Piedt saluted Aviwe Mgijima, who has been a consistent performer for the Buildnat Cape Cobras this season. “You have to understand that he is batting at number seven with the so-called batting tail and it is not easy to get to three figures. You have to shepherd the tail and it is not without its challenges,” he said.

From a national point of view, the return to some form by Piedt should be applauded. It might have only been four wickets in the first innings, but when the off-spinner gets some of his wizardry back and bowls an attacking line just outside off-stump, he can cause havoc, like he did last season with 39 wickets, and in 2013/2014, when he removed 45 batsmen in the four-day domestic showpiece.