The Rollers maintained their 100% start to the 2012/13 season, beating Hermanus by a very convincing 51 runs on Sunday.
Fielding a new-look side which featured four debutants and braving a wind that would have made Fish Hoek residents scared, we produced a clinical performance in which just about every member of the team played an important role.
Batting first on a slow, turning wicket, Neville Cooper took first strike and, after some close shaves early on, he continued where he left off against Edgemead two weeks ago with some aggressive stroke-play.
And following the early departures of George ‘Kallis’ Kampher and Bernie Nel, he found a willing partner in our English import Tim Sant; the pair putting on 43 for the fourth wicket to take the score to 93 before the famous ‘Koeberg Roll’ set in.
Neville’s forced retirement on 50 saw five batsmen depart for just 12 runs as Jacques Laubscher (0), Tim (20), Jacques Toerien (1), Hannes Carlson (11) and Hannes Engelbrecht (1) quickly made the walk back to the shed.
However, Ryan Cooper found a willing partner in Michael van Dewenter, taking the score to 140 before the former tried one shot too many and was caught for 25. Andrew ‘Bruce Banner’ Young (1) came and went, but Michael (18*) showed some class in smashing three boundaries off the final over to take the Rollers to a very competitive 156/9.
With the wind gusting and the wicket popping. Captain Haas opted to start with Scooter and his off-spin. Some players were left scratching their heads when the second ball disappeared for a moerse six, but Jacques soon found his length and went for just 11 in his next five overs.
At the other end, Bruce Banner was continuing his fine form, bowling the dangerous opening batsman Marquin for 29, and also having Koeberg CC’s old nemesis Lyston Davidowitz caught at backward-point for eight.
Then it was the turn of Tim and his leggies. Bowling with a massive crosswind, the Pommie picked up a wicket with his first ball, though credit should go to Bernie for an amazing catch on the long-off boundary.
Two balls later he bamboozled the number four to chip one to Casper in the covers without scoring and, in his next over and still with no run against his name, he had his third wicket – Bernie again doing the business in the deep. Tim eventually finished with 3/13 from his five overs.
From there it was just a matter of time as Casper picked up two LBWs and a special run-out in between a wicket apiece for Ryan and Bernie as Hermanus were dismissed for just 105 inside 32 overs.
Special credit to all the players – some sharp catches and one of the best ground fielding displays I have seen from the Rollers in a long time.
There was a great atmosphere after the game as the two opposing sides socialised and the four Rollers debutants did ‘stumps’- Tim perhaps setting the benchmark for arguably the worst ever attempt at this fine ritual.
So next game against Somerset West in two weeks’ time – see you then.
Neville Cooper 62* (6×4, 1×6)
George Kampher 3
Bernie Nel 5 (1×4)
Tim Sant 20 (1×4)
Jacques Laubscher 0
Jacques Toerien 1
Hannes Carlson 11 (1×4)
Hannes Engelbrecht 1
Ryan Cooper 25 (5×4)
Michael van Dewenter 18* (2×4)
Andrew Young 1
Overs Maidens Runs Wickets RPO
Jacques Laubscher 6 0 23 0 3.9
Andrew Young 7 0 21 2 3
Tim Sant 5 1 13 3 2.6
Ryan Cooper 5 1 11 1 2.1
Hannes Carlson 3 0 6 2 2
Jacques Toerien 3.4 0 15 0 4
Bernie Nel 2 0 6 1 3