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NC Heat know they have to pick up the pieces after second loss

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Mark Charlton (left) NC Heat head coach and assistant Deon Carolus. Picture: Neville Motlhabakwe

On Sunday the provincial side suffered their second defeat in the competition when South Western Districts (SWD) got the better of them in Oudtshoorn after the visitors had won the toss and opted to bat.

THE NORTHERN Cape Heat were scheduled to return to Kimberley on Monday, in time for their CSA One Day Cup match against Eastern Cape Inyathi at the Diamond Oval on Wednesday.

Depending on the result of this game, the home side could either add to their tally of two wins or to the two losses they have picked up in the competition thus far.

On Sunday the provincial side suffered their second defeat in the competition when South Western Districts (SWD) got the better of them in Oudtshoorn after the visitors had won the toss and opted to bat.

NC Heat posted a fair 231/9 in their 50 overs, but it was not enough to keep SWD from reeling them in, scoring 235/4 and winning the encounter with a nail-biting two balls to spare.

Opener Jonathan Vandiar contributed a solid 39 runs off 45 balls hitting two boundaries and two sixes during his stay at the crease. He was caught out in the 17th over by Onke Nyaku off the bowling of Sean Whitehead.

The top order of the visiting team could not settle completely with wickets falling at far too regular intervals. The ship was steadied when the lanky Evan Jones top scored with a brisk 70 runs off 66 deliveries (4x4s, 4x6s). He was eventually caught behind by Jhedhli van Briesies off the bowling of Nyaku.

Middle order batsman Victor Mahlangu contributed the next best score managing 38 runs off 70 deliveries.

Sintu Majeza (4/50) was the pick of the SWD bowlers.

In their response, the hosts’ Yaseen Valli churned out a steady 66 runs, and later on Jhedli van Briesies racked up a brisk 53, but it was No.3 batsman Jean du Plessis with his unbeaten 101 (143 balls, 5x4s, 2x6s) who pounded the nail into NC Heat’s casket.

NC Heat batsman, Victor Mahlangu. Picture: Neville Motlhabakwe

Before their departure to Oudtshoorn, NC Heat head coach Mark Charlton had said he expected different conditions than the fast wicket they had played on in Mpumalanga in their previous game.

“The conditions are a lot different in Mpumalanga. (The wicket) is a lot slower. It will probably be a lower scoring game but we are ready for that. I am very happy with how the guys are playing cricket. So let’s hope it continues,” he had said.

Sunday’s setback for NC Heat is a far cry from their previous match against Mpumalanga Rhinos who they had beaten by 44 runs after racking up an impressive 345/9. In their run chase Rhinos had been dismissed for 301.

In terms of the table standings for division two of the competition, the Tuskers are perched top with 17 points coming from having won all four league games thus far. Mpumalanga Rhinos ( three wins, one loss) sit comfortably in second position on 12 points, SWD are third with 9 points while NC Heat are fourth on 8 points.

Wednesday’s visitors, the Eastern Cape Inyathi are nipping at the heels of the NC Heat with 7 points off their four matches. And this fact alone will ensure that the hosts will definitely dig deep to climb back up the log.

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