SA's juniors ready to shine

2011-12-14 19:46

Cape Town - Quinton de Kock has taken less than a year from being named the 2010 Coca-Cola Khaya Majola Player of the under-19 tournament to establishing himself as a franchise regular in the 1-Day Cup competition for the Highveld Lions.

His predecessor from the 2009 edition, Siya Simetu, is one of the leading wicket-takers and has one of the best averages and economy rates in this season’s CSA three-day provincial competition. He is also likely to make his debut at franchise level in the domestic T20 when the seventh team, drawn from the provincial competition, makes its debut in February.

De Kock will also be part of the South African team that travels to Australia in August for the ICC under-19 World Cup. This is a tournament in which South Africa has a proud history, having reached the final in 2008 and produced the Player of the Tournament in Dominic Hendricks in 2010.

This demonstrates the opportunities that are available to South Africa’s best emerging young players, many of whom will be on display at the 2011 Coca-Cola Khaya Majola Week that starts in Cape Town on Thursday.

It will feature a number of players who have already been capped for South Africa under-19 and who are young enough to go to next year’s World Cup. These include Boland’s fast bowling duo of Rabian Engelbrecht and Lizaad Williams, Free State seamer Corne Dry, Northerns all-rounder Regardt Verster, Easterns batsman Lesiba Ngoepe, Gauteng batsman Shaylen Pillay and the KZN duo of Prenelan Subrayen and Calvin Savage.

Reputation alone is not enough to get a player into the SA Schools team chosen at the end of the week. The selected XI plays Western Province in the final match, which means that form during the week is more important than past record or potential.

There are bound to be some new kids on the block by the time the week comes to its conclusion.

The format for the week sees time matches on the first two days followed by a day of T20 matches (two per side). Sunday is a rest day on which players will conduct coaching clinics around the peninsula followed by two days of limited overs matches on Monday and Tuesday.

Venues and fixtures for the opening day:

UCT Oval: Eastern Province vs. Gauteng; WPCC: Boland vs. Border; Rondebosch BHS: Western Province vs. Northerns; Cape Town CC: Free State vs. KZN Coastal; Rondebosch CC A: Easterns vs. KZN Inland; Rondebosch CC B: Griquas vs. Namibia; Rhodes Rec: Limpopo vs. Mpumalanga; Wynberg BHS: North West vs. SWD.

Play starts at 09:30.