University of Stellenbosch surged to the top of the Varsity Cricket log on Thursday after winning both their matches. Stellenbosch beat Pukke by 55 runs and finished the day with an eight-wicket win over NMMU to knock Pukke off the top. Pukke are now second with Tuks in third as the tournament continues to gather pace ahead of the semi-finals and final on Sunday.
Tuks and UJ are third and fourth respectively Struggling UWC engineered a bit of a fight-back on Thursday, picking up their first two wins of the tournament. An impressive victory over Tuks, the Pretoria team’s first loss of the tournament and a victory over UCT, ensured UWC remain in contention for a semi-final place. Only Kovsies remain winless in the tournament so far after losing all four of their matches. Individually, Maties’ Jean Marais, who hit the tournament’s first hundred on Wednesday, continued his good run of form and currently tops the run scoring charts with 290 runs at an average of 58.00 in six matches.
UCT’s Jack Newby is second with 161 runs at an average of 32.20 with NMMU’s David White third with 160 runs at an average of 32.00 in five games. South Africa Under-19 player Yaseen Valli from UJ took an impressive 3/7 in just two overs against UCT, but once again it was Maties’ Eddie Schutte who was the star bowler of the day. Schutte’s 4/30 against Pukke was the best figures of the day.
Schutte is second on the wicket-takers list with 11 wickets at an average of 10.36 in five games. Another Maties player Neil Botha is top of the list with 14 wickets at an average of 10.07 in six games. The competition is hotting up as the tournament heads for its climax on Sunday. Four semi-final places are up for grabs with the next two days’ matches being crucial for all involved.
Friday will see two matches broadcast live on SuperSport with Tuks vs Pukke live at 15:30, followed by Kovsies vs UWC live at 19:00.
Photo credit: Mario van de Wall SASPA