Olly and Jack (Year 12 students) update us on week two of the South Africa Cricket Exchange
As well as immersing ourselves in Bennies’ culture by taking part in their assemblies and prize giving service, we also got to play another three matches in total. Our first game of the second week here was on Tuesday 30th January where Olly opened the batting and got off to a good start with several good shots. Unfortunately the weather took a turn for the worst and we had to come off the pitch due to lightning; the game was abandoned.
The next day, the weather was a lot brighter and we played another fixture with this one being another T20. Before the game begun, the coach said I (Olly) would be captaining the side for the game, which I was very excited for. I opened the batting and scored a total of 69 runs which was a pleasing captains knock and I also went on to bowl my 4 overs, taking 4 wickets for 14 runs. Overall, it was a great game for me and I really enjoyed playing with my new teammates along with the experience of captaining the side for the first time. Jack also played well scoring 45 runs from 37 balls, resulting in the Bennies 2nd team getting their first win of the season.
On the Thursday myself and Jack were introduced to a new club called Jeppe Cricket Club where we hope to play even more cricket while being in South Africa. It was great to meet even more people within their cricketing community and naturally take every opportunity to play as many games as we can whilst here.
Friday was an eventful day as we trained with the 1st team squad for over 2 hours, which is a great learning experience as well as great motivation to break into the team. That evening there was a social held for the leavers, which had some of the most famous artists in South Africa. During the evening, I met loads of new people with the music being great, and overall, a great experience as I look to continue exploring the unique culture of South Africa.
On Saturday, we played a 50 over match at home on the main oval, whilst scoring some runs and taking a wicket, we unfortunately lost. It was our first time playing at the oval and it was a fantastic venue to play at. Jack and I played again the following day for Jeppe CC, which was another 50 over match and this time we won in the final overs of a very tight game. To summarise, this week has been insanely busy with four cricket matches and plenty of training sessions, but has provided us already with so many enjoyable moments. We are loving our time here and undoubtedly there are many more enjoyable moments to come.