Cricket

Callaghan on Over-50s CWC: Honoured to play for SA again

2020-02-19 14:25
Dave Callaghan
Dave Callaghan (Getty Images)

Cape Town - South African cricket legends will grace the field once again as they compete in the Over-50s Cricket World Cup in Cape Town from March 11-24.

Players like Rodney Malamba, Lefty Ngece, Nazeem White and Anwell Newman will finally get the chance to wear the Proteas emblem - as they were denied the opportunity to compete at their peak due to apartheid.

The tournament is being arranged by the Veterans Cricket Association of South Africa (VCASA), an ancillary member of Cricket South Africa (CSA) whose mission is to keep older cricketers in the game.

"We are calling on our communities to fill the stadiums as our cricket legends deserve our support. It is also a really good opportunity to see some of the greatest cricket players of South African and world cricket take the stage," said Arthur Case, Evergreen Retirement Holdings brand ambassador.

The South African team is being coached by Proteas legend Allan Donald and captained by Dave Callaghan.

"The competitive edge is still there in our squad of 16," said Callaghan, who played 29 ODIs for South Africa from 1992 to 2000.

"Most of us who hit the ball well in our 20s and 30s can still hit it decently now. Those of us who bowled fast or medium have now turned to spin but there will be some sore bodies.

"It's a fantastic honour to be playing for an official South African team again. None of us imagined we would get this chance, especially a World Cup," he said.

"We have a strong team on paper and, I can assure you, the boys are already putting in extra work and loading up on their game time to make sure we're in the best shape possible in March."

Tournament organisers have scheduled the pool matches at schools and cricket clubs around Cape Town from Langa to Stellenbosch, including Rondebosch and Wynberg.

The opening game between Wales and South Africa will be held at Cape Town Cricket Club on March 11, while defending champions Australia will tackle strongly fancied underdogs Zimbabwe at Claremont CC. 

Admission is free to all the games. 

South African legend and tournament ambassador Barry Richards stated that he loved the concept and wished he would've played when he was in his 50s.

"I love the idea of continuing to play in your 50s, especially with the motivation of a World Cup," said the 74-year-old.

"If only it had been around when I was in my 50s! It is a fantastic concept to keep the greater cricket family together and I'm extremely proud to be an ambassador for the tournament.

"I'm looking forward to watching some close and competitive games."

SA Over-50s squad:

Dave Callaghan (captain), Louis Koen, Alan Dawson, Pieter Strydom, Kenny Jackson, Dave Holgate, Anwell Newman, Neil Fusedale, Rodney Malamba, Mlungisi 'Lefty' Ngece, Dave Duncan, Bruce Wilson, Warne Rippon, Brad Player, Nazeem White and Henry Williams

SA Over-50s World Cup fixtures:

Wednesday, March 11 - South Africa v Wales at Cape Town Cricket Club (11:00)

Friday, March 13 - South Africa v England at Wynberg Boys High, Jacques Kallis Oval (11:00)

Sunday, March 15 - South Africa v India at Langa Cricket Club (11:00)

Monday, March 16 - South Africa v Namibia at Groot Drakenstein Cricket Club (11:00)

Wednesday, March 18 - South Africa v Pakistan at Western Province Cricket Club, Wally Wilson (11:00)

- Evergreen Lifestyle

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