TWO young and talented boys have made the King community proud with top-quality performances on the cricket pitch.
Dale Junior Grade 7 pupils Juan Jeggels and Dwayne Pharo were both selected for the Border U13 cricket squad and will participate in the Cricket South Africa (CSA) national tournament in Cape Town this week.
Last week they played in a warm-up match against Eastern Province in Grahamstown as preparation for the challenge.
The duo’s cricketing journey started at Breidbach Primary School, where they were taught the finer points of the sport at the Bakers Mini Cricket games under the guidance of Rosa Kennedy, a former educator at the school.
In 2012, the local Pioneers United Cricket Club started a programme in which young boys and girls were trained in the mornings to improve their cricketing skills under the mentorship of the club’s senior cricketers – Zoyisile Booi, Elthin Jeggels and Mzamo Booi.
Their big break came the same year when they were both offered bursaries at Dale College Boys’ Primary School in King William’s Town.
Both boys had an immediate impact, both on the cricket and rugby fronts.
Jeggels, a left-handed batsman, started out as an opening batter and a right-arm medium bowler with the ability to pick up crucial wickets.
His hard work, commitment and discipline to the sport paid dividends after he was chosen as captain of the successful U13 cricket team that was unbeaten in the Border region last year.
This year his side lost only two matches. He picked up over 30 wickets and contributed useful runs down the order as a batsman.
Pharo is a hard-hitting right-handed top order batsman who has amassed over 1000 runs.
He made two telling centuries – 125 against Queens Junior and 115 against Hudson Park.
He is also a useful left-arm spin bowler, who in the first term this year single-handedly destroyed Hudson Park when he recorded six wickets for 12 runs.
Both are members of the Breidbach-based Pioneers United Cricket Team and Pharo managed 65 runs against Stirling Old Boys during a Border Cricket promotional league game at the Breidbach Oval in his only match for the club this season.
Dale Junior Cricket U13 head coach Thembela Mbada describes the duo as talented with a bright future ahead of them.
“They are energetic, talented boys who are hard workers and will be good prospects for the future as they did exceptionally well this season.”