Impala Cricket Club seamer Brady Barends’ brace of breakthroughs proved vital, as North West comfortably beat KwaZulu-Natal Inland by six wickets in Friday’s Africa T20 Cup fixture at the City Oval in Pietermaritzburg.
Barends removed former South African batsman Vaughn van Jaarsveld – and later the talented Mbasa Gqadushe – to finish with fine figures of two for 39 in KwaZulu-Natal Inland’s final total of 156 for five in 20 overs.
The dismissal of the hard-hitting van Jaarsveld, who struck three sixes and as many fours en route to 60 from just 44 deliveries, was particularly important. Standard Cricket Club’s Sarel Erwee and Kyle Nipper, meanwhile, managed 40 and 10, respectively.
North West reached the challenging target with eight deliveries to spare, thanks largely to opener Janneman Malan’s brisk 47 – and complementary cameos from middle-order duo Marques Ackerman and Andre Malan.
“They beat us in this tournament last year, so it was good to get one over them this time. I really enjoyed my bowling in this match – and appreciated the support of Johannes Diseko. His tight overs were good for us – and Ayavuya Myoli also bowled very well,” Barends told Club Cricket SA.
“Vaughn is quite a leg-side player, so I started to push one or two deliveries across him, to see if he could hit me over extra cover. Keeping the ball full was important as well. Getting him out at that time was big for us.
“The work put in against Vaughn eventually paid off. Those boundaries he struck were looking ominous – and we needed to get him out before he went through to an even bigger innings. Beating last year’s losing finalists, here, is going to bring us confidence for the rest of the competition.”