Stars in Paarl Royals win

After losing to the Durban Super Giants on the road, Paarl Royals rebounded at home with a 10-run triumph against the same team. At Boland Park in Paarl on Tuesday, Wihan Lubbe’s 36-ball 57, combined with helpful contributions from Jos Buttler and David Miller, helped the Royals score a competitive 169/6. (January 17). In the chase, Heinrich Klaasen hit an unbeaten 56 off 39 balls, but the Super Giants lost wickets often and were eventually bowled out for 159/8 thanks in large part to Bjorn Fortuin (3-14) and Evan Jones (4-32).

The Super Giants got off to a good start in the opening three overs thanks to several boundaries from Kyle Mayers and a six from Wiaan Mulder. By the end of the fifth over, though, they were down to 29/3 after Mayers was caught and bowled by Bjorn Fortuin, who also bowled Quinton de Kock and caught Dwaine Pretorius in front of successive deliveries. The Super Giants only managed to score 37 in the powerplay because of the rapid wickets, and they experienced a further blow when Mulder, who had just smashed a six off Tabraiz Shamsi, was bowled by that same bowler.

After that, Klaasen hammered three fours off Shamsi in the tenth over, but Jason Holder soon fell after hitting a six off Evan Jones, putting the Super Giants in even more danger at 78/5. Christiaan Jonker and Klaasen made an effort to keep the innings going, but the latter fell to Jones for his second wicket. Keshav Maharaj scored 17 runs with three fours, but Jones quickly claimed both his and Hardus Viljoen’s wickets, leaving the Super Giants needing 33 runs off 12 balls and pinning their hopes on Klaasen.

Klaasen reached a 36-ball fifty by hitting a six off Ngidi’s final delivery of the 19th over, which produced 14 runs. Jones maintained tight control as he let away only six runs off the first four deliveries, including a leg-bye, with 19 needed in the final over. As a result, the Super Giants needed two big hits to tie the game. The Super Giants were unsuccessful despite a wide bowled by Jones that brought the total to 12 off 2 runs.

Prior to that, after being called to bat, the Paarl Royals got off to a sluggish start and lost Jason Roy in the third over when Viljoen bowled him. Then Buttler entered the fray, bringing up 9000 runs in T20 cricket with a four and a six off Reece Topley. Before Lubbe took on Maharaj and reverse-swept the spinner for a four and a six in the eighth over, the Royals managed 43 during the powerplay. When Buttler was stumped by Maharaj, the second wicket partnership had totaled 53 runs.

Lubbe continued to knock regular boundaries for the Royals, who had scored 72 at the midway point. He also cleared the deep midwicket fence off Pretorius and brought up a 33-ball fifty with a six over long leg off Topley in the sixteenth. But he fell the same way, landing on the stumps with an inside edge. Eoin Morgan was quickly dismissed by Pretorius, but Miller made some crucial runs for the Royals, scoring two fours and a six to help them score quickly in the final stages of the game. The Royals finished just short of 170 runs after scoring 50 runs in the final five overs before Miller was removed by Pretorius in the penultimate over.