- Coach singles out Karabo, Aditya, Mooketsi, Dhru and Amir for special mention
- 15-year old Michael Badenhorst crowned Best Emerging Player
National cricket team players got their much-needed minutes under their belts when they took part in the recently concluded T20 Botswana Premier League.
In January, the Botswana Cricket Association (BCA) organised the tournament featuring six teams to keep national team players active ahead of a busy international calendar.
ITEC Gorillas emerged as the winners at the end of the three week-long competition.
National team coach Joseph Angara was impressed with the contribution of national team players during the tournament. “It was a very competitive T20 tournament,” Angara said.
“National team players like Karabo, Aditya, Mooketsi, Dhru and Amir were outstanding while the Tuskers player from Zimbabwe (Haukozi) stole the show and proved his worth playing in the tournament. Some youngsters like Phemelo, Silas, Shayan and the young lad Michael showed a lot of potential.”
ITEC Gorillas beat Kobe Trading by six wickets in the final. In the first semi-final, Kobe Trading beat Aqua Pro Warriors by eight wickets in 12.3 overs. The champions faced the Pink Panthers in the second semi-final and prevailed by seven wickets after 12 overs.
The final lasted at least three over mores as the Gorillas won within 15.3overs.
Mmoloki Mooketsi of Kobe Trading was voted the best bowler after his haul of 10 wickets from seven matches while the Gorilla’s Simbarashe Haukozi shone with the bat, scoring 309 runs from the same number of matches. Fifteen-year old Michael Badenhorst was crowned Best Emerging Player after taking five wickets and scoring 13 runs in five matches.
The ITEC Gorillas youngster proved he is one for the future with his display, as managing to hold his own against his more experienced counterparts. Haukozi’s 309 runs ensured that he emerged with the Player of the Tournament award.
During the six-team group stage matches, the Aqua Pro Warriors had finished on top of the log with eight points from five games. They lost one game while the Gorillas were second with six points. The Pink Panthers also had six points after the two teams won three of their five group stage matches.
Kobe Trading and Board Master finished with four points but the former progressed to the semi-final due to a superior net run rate. Car Kingdom finished at the bottom with just one win, and together with Board Master, failed to progress to the semi-finals.
“With a view to keeping our national players engaged and at the same time focus on preparations for the likely tournaments ahead in 2022, the BCA is scheduled to commence the BCA BPL T20,” BCA vice chairperson, Sumod Damodar, said at the start of the tournament.
“The players are selected and chosen from the senior men’s and Under 19 squads, with a few new potential inclusions who would have this platform to display their capabilities to enable the national coach to identify potential talent for future selection to national teams.”
The national team was due to travel to Benoni, South Africa for the Africa Cricket Association T20 Cup finals this week, but the tournament has been postponed with no new dates confirmed yet.