Final swipe at tough season for Fish Hoek

Fish Hoek CC's Tim Vann, left, and James Wridgeway in a mid-pitch conference,

Fish Hoek Cricket Club lost by an innings and 144 runs against Helderberg in a Western Province Cricket Association (WPCA) division 1B two-day fixture, last weekend.

Batting was made to look difficult on a flat pitch by Fish Hoek batsmen as they were dismissed for 66 runs in their first innings. Lower order batsman Simon O’Connel was the only one to trouble the Helderberg bowlers as he top scored with 35 runs.

Helderberg made 295 runs in their innings with player coach Jarret Sutton the pick of the bowlers, taking 3/61. Things did not get any easier for Fish Hoek as they were dismissed for 88 runs. Player and club secretary Anthony Minnaar top scored with 23 runs.

Although disappointed, Minnaar believes his side will bounce back.

“We had a exodus of nine first team players last year and had to bring in players that were second and third team. However, some of them had stepped up to the plate. Every club goes through a rebuilding phase and I believe things will come right,” he said.

They have not had it their way in the WPCA division 1B format, losing all four of their matches before this. They lost to Strandfontein and Yorkshire by an innings and 119 runs. Also to Northerns Goodwood and Hottentots Holland by an innings and 210 runs, and eight wickets respectively.

They would hope to put their defeats behind them when they host Bishop Lavis.

Minnaar said they can can get one over Bishop Lavis as they lost narrowly to them in the WPCA Final Challenge one-day cup, earlier this season.

“We are very confident of getting a good result for the club in this game,” he said

A week earlier, Fish Hoek lost by two wickets against Glamorgan in a WPCA Final Challenge Challenge one-day cup fixture. However, the boys from the far south did not go down without a fight as they kept Glamorgan on their feet. Fish Hoek were dismissed for 113 runs with Craig Golding top scoring with 37 runs as wickets fell at regular intervals.

Golding and top order batsman Minnaar put on a 68 run seventh-wicket partnership but that was not enough as wickets fell around them. The Ruyterwacht side’s Devon Kriel caused problems for Fish Hoek batsmen and was rewarded with figures of 5/43. Fish Hoek had Glamorgan at 80/4 at one stage after Minnaar who was brought into the attack and took 4/22 in five overs. However, his performance was not enough as the Glamorgan batsmen kept their nerve to win by two-wickets. Glamorgan’s Hugo Labuschagne top scored with 28, supported by Jason Valentine who score 21 runs.

Sutton said this was by far one of Fish Hoek’s best performances of the season.

“It was a vastly improved performance after the disappointment of the first half of the season. If our fielding was up to scratch we would have walked away with the four points,” he said.

Fish Hoek have had a rocky time in the WPCA one-day format as they lost all four of their games. They lost to Elsies River Northlink and Bishop Lavis by six wickets before going down to Strandfontein by 191 runs.

“We were in a strong pool as both Bishop Lavis and Strandfontein are in the top half of of the league. None of the teams can be taken for granted because anything can happen on the day.

“We did not play too badly in the one-day campaign but we did not take our chances,” he said.

Sutton said the main aim is to win most of their remaining matches in order to stay in the WPCA division 1B.

“We had a tough start to the two-day format season. It is never ideal to lose your opening four matches but we have learnt some lessons from those matches and are hoping to put our best foot forward for the two-day format resumes at the weekend. Our aim for the rest of the season is to avoid relegation,” he said.