Durban Heat Go Down in Nail Biter at Kingsmead

Keshav Maharaj bowls for the Durban Heat

The Durban Heat's opening game of the Mzansi Super League ended in defeat as the Cape Town Blitz won a final over thriller by three wickets at Kingsmead Cricket Stadium on Sunday.



The visiting Blitz won the toss and elected to bowl first with the opening partnership of MornĂ© van Wyk and Hashim Amla taking first strike for the hosts. The pair managed to get the Heat to 31 in the sixth over before Anrich Nortje’s third over proved damaging.

The young quick picked up the crucial wickets of Van Wyk for 26, as well as SJ Erwee and Temba Bavuma for ducks. In his next over Nortje picked up the vital wicket of Amla for 15.

Captain Albie Morkel then joined Khaya Zondo at the wicket with the score on 48 for four and the pair consolidated well in the early stages of their partnership before taking advantage of the Blitz bowling right up to the 16th over.

Morkel scored a fluent 45 from just 25 deliveries and Zondo finished 49 not out off 42 balls as their partnership of 71 went a long way in resurrecting the Heat and getting them to a defendable total of 157.

Vernon Philander’s 16 not out also boosted the Heat to their final resting place.

The Heat needed to start well with the ball but both teams didn’t quite take the initiative and after the powerplay the Blitz were 40 for the loss of one wicket. The first wicket went to Marchant de Lange, who bowled Dawid Malan for 12.

Maharaj then accounted for Kyle Verreynne and Jannaman Malan in the same over so at the end of the ninth over the Blitz were 51 for three and the Heat found themselves slightly in front.

Pakistan star Asif Ali then took the game away from the Heat as he blasted 80 runs off just 33 balls and he and Ferisco Adams put on 60 runs for the sixth wicket. Their partnership took the Blitz to 143 in the 18th over.

Ali was caught by Erwee off the bowling of Kyle Abbott and then seven runs later Adams fell to De Lange, caught by Van Wyk.

With eight runs to get Malusi Siboto and George Linde managed to get their side over the line with five balls to spare; winning the game by three wickets.

Despite the result the Durban Heat will be encouraged by how they recovered with the bat after a poor start. Captain Albie Morkel is looking at the positives going into their second clash of the tournament against the Tshwane Spartans on Wednesday.

“We came back really nicely and I thought that we were actually ahead of the game when we went into the field,” Morkel said.

“We bowled really nicely in patches and (Asif) Ali was a bit of an unknown factor for us but he played well and took the game away from us in two overs.

“You could argue that maybe there was a tactical error and we bowled the spinner for one over too many but in Prenelan’s first three overs he was in control but it was Ali’s day and he kept hitting them out the park.”

The Heat now look forward to a clash with the Tshwane Spartans on Wednesday at Kingsmead - who lost their opening match of the tournament against the Blitz on Friday. Morkel is expecting another tough encounter.

“After their first loss they will come here with a lot of energy with AB de Villiers being their key.

“If we can look after him then I believe that we have the power to come out on top,” Morkel added.

Msanzi Super League Full Fixtures - Click Here

Durban Heat Squad:
Hashim Amla, Rashid Khan, David Miller, Heinrich Klaasen, Kyle Abbott, Keshav Maharaj, Khaya Zondo, Albie Morkel, Marchant de Lange, Vernon Philander, Brandon Mavuta, Temba Bavuma, Morné van Wyk, Okuhle Cele, Sarel Erwee, Tladi Bokako, Prenelan Subrayen.

More information can be found at durbanheat.co.za





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