The West Coast Rollers started the season on a winning, if not slightly nerve-wracking, one-wicket victory against Edgemead on Sunday afternoon.
At a venue where we have thrown some winning positions in the past, we almost came unstuck again despite chasing a meagre target of 116, set on the back of some very tight bowling.
Winning the toss and electing to field, Neville Cooper rallied the troops to have the hosts reeling at 37/4 at the drinks break, with some tight bowling from Ryan Cooper and Michael van Dewenter doing the early damage, before Hannes Carlson came on to weave his magic again.
After Ryan bowled the opener for a duck, Casper took care of batsmen 2-4 in a spell which finished with 7-1-24-3, brilliantly assisted by Jakes Oberholzer’s now customary tight spell of seven overs for just 20 runs.
A mid-order onslaught from Ryan Wilke (42) got Edgemead back into it, but Tim Sant got the crucial wicket before Ryan (7-2-12-5) came back on to wrap up the tail and restrict the home side to 115.
The Rollers’ reply was a cautious one, with Tim and Francois Siebrits putting on 31 in 12 overs following the early loss of Hannes Engelbrecht for a duck.
Cue the now infamous Rollers collapse as we lost four wickets for six runs in the space of five overs, including Jacques Laubscher for a duck and George ‘Kallis’ Kamfer for 1.
Ryan and the returning Louis Pretorius restored some parity with a 52-run partnership, aided in no small measure by Shane Smith’s two overs for 28.
However, Louis’ demise for a brisk 23 brought about another mini-collapse as Michael (0), Neville (15) and Casper (0) went in quick succession, leaving the Rollers six runs short with just one wicket remaining.
However, Ryan (39 not out) held firm before Jakes smashed the winning runs straight back over the bowler’s head to complete a memorable win.
A great time was had afterwards as the Rollers dominated the fines and the bar, resulting in the scorebook being left behind and this report only reaching you on a Thursday …
Tim Sant 19 (2×4)
Hannes Engelbrecht (0)
Francois Siebrits (11)
George Kamfer 1
Jacques Laubscher 0
Louis Pretorius 23 (4×4)
Ryan Cooper 39* (5×4)
Michael van Dewenter 0
Neville Cooper 15 (2×4)
Hannes Carlson 0
Jakes Oberholzer 2*
TOTAL: 116/9 (33.3 overs)
Ryan Cooper 7-2-12-5
Michael van Dewenter 4-1-12-0
Hannes Carlson 7-1-24-3
Jakes Oberholzer 7-0-20-0
Tim Sant 4-0-21-1
Francois Siebrits 2-0-17-0
Jacques Laubscher 1.3-0-6-1