Jason Knibbs took an exceptional five wickets for eight runs in 3.3 overs to help set up an easy, eight-wicket victory for St Stithians College over Hudson Park in the final of the 2016/2017 Coca-Cola Schools T20 Challenge in Stellenbosch on Sunday.
Proving that the newly launched Cricket South Africa (CSA) Focus Schools Programme was a great success, Hudson Park made it to the tournament final after a nail-biting, one-run triumph over Wynberg Boys’ High in their semi-final clash earlier in the day, while St Stithians went about their normal business, claiming a comfortable, 49-run win over St Andrews to secure their place in the final.
The Saints attack, led by Knibbs was in fine form. Craig Meier took 2/15 with Jean-Pierre Bloem and Tristan Brooks chipping in with a scalp each seeing Hudson bundled out for just 62 runs in 16.3 overs.
Opening batsman and captain, Joshua Richards then made a quick-fire 54 from 19 balls (9 fours, 2 sixes) to make sure that his side was on the brink of success by the time he fell on over 4.3. The defending champions were simply outstanding with the bat, reaching their target in exactly five overs.
St. Stithian’s College 159/5 (Joshua Richards 66, Matthew Erasmus 55; Calvin King 2/19); St. Andrews (Bloemfontein) 110 (Calvin Flanegan 34, Gerald Coetzee 31; JP Bloem 2/9, Johan Mulder 2/19). St. Stithian’s College won by 49 runs.
Hudson Park 116/3 (Sinethemba Qeshile 53*, Nonelele Yikha 19; Josh Breed 1/29); Wynberg Boys’ High 115/ 9 (Grant Martin 38, Ebrahiem Sama 18; Jason Niemand 3/21, Akhona Mnyaka 2/12). Hudson Park won by one run.
Hudson Park 62 (Luke Dallas 15; Jason Knibbs 5/8, Craig Meier 2/15); St. Stithian’s College 66/2 (Joshua Richards 54; Bradley Mauer 1/11). St. Stithian’s College won by eight wickets.