The second week of the CSA T20 Challenge saw the Lions and Knights eliminated while WP Blitz, Titans and Rocks progressed to the semi-finals of the competition. Ongama Gcwabe & Bet Central pick the Team of the Week for week 2.
Week two has been about the Blitz, Titans and Rocks who have all qualified for the semi-finals. The third week will see the Warriors, Dolphins and Dragons battle it out for the last semi-final spot available. But before we talk about the third & final week, let’s look at the Team of the Week for Week 2:
1: Pieter Malan
Opening the batting with his younger brother, Janneman, Pieter has to play a more calculative game to accommodate a much bolder and flashier brother. This week, Janneman has had it tough and struggled to score big runs, leaving Pieter to take on the role of the aggressor.
This is the reason Pieter makes this week’s team. Throughout the week, he successfully played outside of himself. He was more attacking as was required by the match situation. His 180 runs in six matches have been key for the Rocks’ success in the tournament.
2: Wihan Lubbe
Lubbe makes the team again this week. He picked up where he left off from last week and got stuck in again for the Warriors. Opening with Matthew Breetzke who’s been out of form has meant Lubbe needed to stay longer at the crease and made him more valuable for the Warriors with both bat and ball.
With the bat, Lubbe has 231 runs, a strike rate of 124.86 and two fifties to his name. He has been chipping in with the ball too in this competition and has taken big wickets for the Warriors. In the 10 overs he has bowled in the competition, he has figures of 3-75 at an average of 25.
3: Tony de Zorzi
De Zorzi has carried his good form in red-ball cricket into the T20 Challenge. In the four matches, he has scores of 42, 15, 41 and 45. In all these innings, De Zorzi came to the crease in the powerplay (0-6 overs) and helped the Blitz build a solid foundation for their lower-order batters.
He has struck at 136.19 and has smashed six 6s and nine 4s in the competition so far.
4: David Miller
Miller comes in at 4 in this week’s team. He has been crucial for the Dolphins throughout the tournament. Miller went into the final match of the week carrying a niggle that eventually prevented him from playing an important match. The Dolphins lost that match and failed to secure an early ticket to the semis. Miller sits fifth on the leading run-scorers of the tournament with 193 runs which include two fifties.
5: Tristan Stubbs
Stubbs has been a breath of fresh air in this tournament. He has been the star of the tournament no matter the team you support. The 21-year-old is the leading run-scorer with 275 runs, three fifties and a strike rate of 195. He slots in at five in this week’s team.
6: Dwaine Pretorius
Pretorius’ unbeaten 74 against the Rocks earns him a spot in this week’s team. It was the kind of innings that we’ve all been waiting for from a player of his calibre. That knock carried the Dragons to the Super-Over as the match was tied. In the competition, he plays more of a batting role seeing that he comes in at three for the Dragons. Pretorius has 141 runs so far and has muscled nine 6s and six 4s.
7: Wayne Parnell ©
Parnell takes the captaincy and all-rounder role in the team. His leadership at the Blitz has been incredible. He has led his team to the semi-finals with only one defeat in their seven matches. His unbeaten 17-ball 33 against the Dragons earlier in the week stands out. In the 21.3 overs he’s bowled so far, Parnell has an economy rate of 5.9 and has taken five wickets.
8: Junaid Dawood
Another star of the tournament has been Junaid Dawood. His leg-spin has troubled batters numerous times in the T20 Challenge. He is currently the second leading wicket-taker with ten wickets in just five games. He has an average of 11.90 and an economy of 6.26.
9: Shaun von Berg
Von Berg gets a spot ahead of Aaron Phangiso and Senuran Muthusamy who have also been performing well so far. This tournament has shown just how hard it is to face leg-spinners on the St. Georges’ Park wickets. In five matches, Shaun has taken a total of eight wickets and has an economy of 5.14 which is gold in T20 cricket. His partnership with Dawood would be lethal.
10: Beuran Hendricks
Hendricks has by far been the most improved Proteas player in this competition. He looks like the Hendricks of old. The rhythm is smooth, and he swings the ball up front. His ten wickets have literally propelled the Blitz to the semi-finals. He currently holds the best figures in the competition with his 4-20 against the Dragons.
11: Ottneil Baartman
In T20 cricket, dot-balls are just as important as wickets. Baartman is nowhere near the top leading wicket-takers in the competition but has bowled many dot balls. In five matches, he has bowled 17 overs and has an economy of 5.88.