Paarl Royals overcome Pretoria Capitals in thriller at Centurion

Paarl Royals celebrate the wicket of Jimmy Neesham of Pretoria Capitals during their SA20 clash at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Sunday

Paarl Royals celebrate the wicket of Jimmy Neesham of Pretoria Capitals during their SA20 clash at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Sunday. Photo: Ron Gaunt/SportzPics

Published Jan 14, 2024


Betway SA20 season 2 is proving to be a nightmare for the bowlers.

After 803 runs were blasted on Saturday, the Pretoria Capitals and Paarl Royals served up another 410-run fest at Centurion on Sunday.

But it was the Royals bowling unit that held their nerve when it mattered most to deliver a thrilling 10-run victory for the visitors.

It was West Indian international Obed McCoy that showed he has ice running through his veins by defending 14 runs in the final over after the Royals had posted 210/3.

McCoy’s last over heroics was even more impressive due to the left-arm seamer suffering from severe cramp, causing the bowler to receive medical attention throughout the six deliveries. Ultimately, McCoy only conceded three runs due to flummoxing tailender Hardus Viljoen with a concoction of slower balls and cutters.

McCoy (1/30), however, received significant support from his new ball partner Lungi Ngidi, who finished with the brilliant figures of 4/39 that restricted the Capitals to 200/7.

Ngidi started well by removing both Phil Salt and Theunis de Bruyn in the first over of the Capitals’ run-chase.

But such is the nature of T20 cricket that the only way to rebuild is by launching a counter-attack.

Rilee Rossouw and Will Jacks set about the task in blistering fashion as they bettered the SA20 partnership record for any wicket that was only set hours a few hours earlier by David Miller and Mitchell Van Buuren.

The pair blitzed 147 off only 77 balls with Rossouw smashing 82 off 45 balls (10x4, 4x6), while Jacks contributed 58 off 34 balls (6x4, 4x3).

One of Jacks’ sixes was caught by a spectator in the crowd that set him in line for the “Betway Catch a R2 million” prize.

But their departure to within three balls of each other to Ngidi and Bjorn Fortuin left the Capitals requiring 58 off 35 balls.

The Royals kept chipping away with the Royals seam trio of Ngidi, McCoy and Andile Phehlukwayo (1/41) removing Colin Ingram, Jimmy Neesham and Eathan Bosch to set up a thrilling climax.

The Royals victory was set up earlier though through David Miller and Mitchell van Buuren, who shared an unbeaten 141-run stand for the fourth wicket from just 76 deliveries.

Miller initially played second fiddle to his younger partner Van Buuren. The youngster struck the ball cleanly from the outset, smashing three maximums and seven boundaries to finish with a SA20 career-best 72 not out from just 40 balls. He was equally destructive on both sides of the wicket.

Miller (75, 8x4, 3x6) caught up at the backend when he dispatched last season’s Betway SA20 Rising Star Eathan Bosch for three sixes in the final over to push the Royals past the 200-run mark, which ultimately proved enough on the night.


IOL Sport