The Stormers have higher, far more treacherous mountains to climb than the picturesque hill near Newlands on Saturday. Ranked against them will be a crocked list that is as long as a teamsheet, their fans and the Reds – a side that has a strong pack and a potent attacking backline. Oh, and if they lose there’s the possible purgatory of a promotion/relegation match against the Lions to look forward to. By KEN BORLAND.
David Saker made the big mistake of calling James Anderson “the most skilful bowler in the world” after the Lancastrian become the fourth Englishman to pass the 300-wicket mark in Test cricket. While his comments hold some merit, skill doesn’t mean he’s the best, and there really isn’t much to debate regarding who is. BY ANT SIMS.
It’s like a real-life Bollywood blockbuster as the spot-fixing saga drags on. More cricketers have been arrested and Shanthakumaran Sreesanth has claimed that he is innocent. The drama is unlikely to slow down any time soon, but the tournament keeps going on despite protests all over the show. By ANT SIMS.
David Warner’s recent Twitter outburst, directed at two Australian journalists, has put sportsmen and their Tweets in the spotlight yet again. Media managers face a whole extra challenge these days, and it’s becoming clear that players might need social media training alongside their traditional churn-out-these-clichés-in-press-conferences training. BY ANT SIMS.
South Africa’s Vodacom SuperRugby Conference title still looks set to return to Tshwane as the Bulls won their fifth successive game to keep ahead of the Cheetahs, who claimed an impressive victory over the Reds. The Sharks, meanwhile, silenced allegations of cultural divisions within their team by sealing a spirited win over the Western Force in Perth. By KEN BORLAND.
Three IPL players were arrested on allegations of spot-fixing on Thursday and, if the allegations are true, one of the most nagging questions will be ‘why’? Why would somebody deliberately risk their reputation and compromise their craft? ANT SIMS spoke to sports psychologist Greg Wilmot to get some insight.
It’s scandal time all over again after three IPL players were arrested on Thursday on suspicion of spot-fixing. Delhi police have said that there will be more arrests, with as many as 12 matches reportedly under scrutiny. While it’s no surprise, the incident has once again highlighted the need for a more stringent anti-corruption unit across the board. By ANT SIMS.
Lord’s is a special cricket ground, and for the New Zealand team about to play England there on Thursday, it’s a massive occasion - with only three out of the presumed starting XI having played there before. From sampling the lunch to strolling out of the pavilion, it’s an occasion to relish, with the Black Caps hoping to top it off with a special performance. By ANT SIMS.
Too much aggression and testosterone are often factors which get the blame for South Africa’s horrific rape statistics, but one brave survivor has teamed up with rugby teams to turn these integral parts of the game into something beneficial for the fight against violent sexual abuse. By KEN BORLAND.
For arguably the first time ever, Cricket South Africa has acted quickly and decisively. Just a few hours after Gary Kirsten announced that he would not be renewing his contract as national coach, his deputy, Russell Domingo, was announced as successor - and it’s the best thing CSA could’ve done. By ANT SIMS.
Despite coach Naka Drotske talking up the attacking prowess of unlikely Conference candidates the Cheetahs, this vital result will be decided by the extent to which their defence can frustrate the Hurricanes into making mistakes. For the Stormers, already trailing the Bulls by eight points, a loss to the Waratahs in Sydney could sink their season. And at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, the Kings will have to summon the sort of early-season chutzpah and resilience that has kept them above Saturday’s bottom-of-the-log opponents, the Highlanders. By KEN BORLAND.
Over the last few days, the matter of Tim May’s ousting has become more and more hotly contested. May was removed as player representative from the ICC cricket committee, reportedly through some underhanded doings from the BCCI. The ICC hasn’t batted an eyelash and the International Cricketers Associations wants the matter investigated. By ANT SIMS.
JP Duminy will return from a freak injury which side-lined him for over six months when South Africa ran out in the Champions Trophy in June. He was handed a free pass back into the squad, despite not having played competitive cricket since last year November and he’s confident South Africa have what it takes to go all the way in the competition. By ANT SIMS.
Set pieces must be the focus for the Sharks. Unless the pack delivers against the strong Highlanders, don’t expect dividends from the returns of JP Pietersen and Lwazi Mvovo. Also overseas, the Stormers will have to pull out the stops against a Blues team with attacking prowess and a tight defence. At Loftus the Bulls will have to keep their defence intact against the Highlanders and the Southern Kings will be aiming to keep the whingeing Waratahs winless in South Africa since 2009.