Erwee’s career trajectory on the up-and-up – Featured Durban Blog

Erwee’s career trajectory on the up-and-up:

From a middle order batsman during his academy days to an award winning opening batsman for the Hollywoodbets Dolphins, Sarel Erwee has come a long way and his recent accolades culminated in a call up to the South Africa A side to tour India in July.

SJ, as he is called by his team mates, acknowledges that his cricket career has taken longer to blossom than he would have liked, but the amount of support that he received from his loved ones and those closest to him, fuelled his perseverance.

“My cricket career does actually feel like it has taken ‘forever’ to kick off, however for me it was all about the process and if I followed that process it was either going to happen as soon as possible or it was going to take a bit of time,” the hard-hitting opener said candidly.

“Luckily, I had family and friends that supported me in my cricket journey, so whether it took two or three years or the many years that it has actually taken me, it has a lot to do with the support that I had and I was always going to keep striving to reach the pinnacle.”

Regardless of the support and the dream for a big break in his career, the 28 year-old had to come to terms with the fact that, cricket might not give him enough to put food on the table and had some tough decisions to make.

“There came a time in my career, probably three years ago when I actually did decide that I was giving up cricket at the end of the season,” he admitted.

At that time, SJ was still playing for KZN Inland and he felt as though his career had come to a stand-still – and age was not on his side.

“To be honest, I was not progressing in my career – I had made my debut for the Dolphins during the 2013/14 season and thereafter things went silent for the remainder of the year.

“So for me it felt like my career was stagnant and I was getting older so I thought maybe I should accept this as my reality.”

Thankfully, that very same year he had thought of throwing in the towel, Erwee made another appearance for the Dolphins and due to his excellent performance and consistency through that season; he was rewarded with a contract.

Considering the amount of years that he has spent on the field, Erwee has acquired a vast knowledge of the game and the elements that every cricket player should be aware of that are part and parcel of the sport.

“The work ethic that I have now is probably much higher than when I first started,” he added. “I think those three years were crucial as a youngster.

“I worked hard, but the way I am working now, is harder but also smarter – doing the right things at the right time, whereas at that time it was just hitting balls and training without being specific.”

Erwee went on to say that the biggest highlight of his career on the field has to be the entire 2017/18 Dolphins campaign.

“I think this whole season has been quite a highlight; the certain times that I have scored runs for the Dolphins, Hong Kong Sixes victory, winning the Africa T20 Cup, Momentum One Day Cup and reaching the final of the Ram Slam.

“The one that probably stands out for me though is the century that I scored in Centurion against Cobras during our Ram Slam T20 semi-final where there was quite a full stadium and if I look now, that was my moment.

“The feeling I had then, is almost like the one I had when I received that SA A call up – it is just indescribable.”

Erwee has amassed just under 4000 runs in his first-class career with a highest score of 200, credits his success to a pool of people whom he looks up to and have helped shape his career, amongst those are Divan Van Wyk, Shane Burger, Imraan Khan and an England cricketer, Jason Roy.

The SA A will depart for the India tour four-day series late in July.

The post Erwee’s career trajectory on the up-and-up appeared first on Hollywoodbets Dolphins.

KZN teams dominate 2018 Township & Rural Development Tournament:

Home teams reigned supreme in both the U15 and U19 categories of the KZNCU, DSR and Sunfoil Township and Rural Cricket Development Schools’ Tournament, which came to an end at Hilton College this weekend.

In the U15 final, KwaMsane beat Gauteng by eight wickets, whilst Esikhaleni beat Western Province by six wickets in the U19 final.

SA U19 representative, Andile Mogkakane, who captained the Esikhaleni team was thrilled with the outcome.

“We set our goals before the tournament and discussed what we wanted to achieve and what the role of individual players were with our coaches,” he said.

“Every single person in the tournament was very excited about the win – it was the first final for some of the guys and winning was a bonus as it wasn’t an easy game against Western Province, but we knew what had to do to win – and we stuck to the plans and focussed on our goals.”

Sanelisiwe Kuzwayo, the KZNCU Township and Rural Development manager rated this year’s tournament as the most successful one ever.

“It went very well and we really achieved the goals we’d set for ourselves,” she said. “Our boys usually play only twenty overs because of the lack of facilities in our townships, however, playing at Hilton College, the Pietermaritzburg Oval and Weston Agricultural College gave us the opportunity to play a longer format of the game.

“This gave our boys exposure to the national format and gave them the opportunity to score hundreds and fifties and take more wickets.”

She added that she was extremely grateful to the KZN department of sports and recreation, the Willowton Group and other sponsors for their ongoing support of the tournament.

“A highlight for me was having the KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Arts, Culture, Sport and Recreation, Mrs Bongi Sithole-Moloi attend and speak at the closing ceremony and spend some time with us,” she said. “This hasn’t been possible until this year, as she has a very busy schedule so it was very humbling to have her there. It was also great to have representatives from the Willowton Group at the tournament.”

The tournament ended on a high, with the Sport Development Trust presenting thousands of rands worth of cricketing equipment to the top performers, and specialised cricket coaching equipement to coaches from various rural areas in KZN.

“Our coaches are very passionate about what they do, but they have to deal with various challenges, one of which is the lack of specialised coaching equipment – this means so much to them,” said Kuzwayo.

This year saw the inclusion of two new awards, sponsored by the Durban-based NGO, the Institute for Learning and Motivation – SA (ILM-SA): a fair play award for the U15 and U19 teams who displayed outstanding levels of sportsmanship (won by the U15 KwaMsane team and the U19 Gauteng team), and cash prizes for the top KZNCU township and rural coaches and assistant coaches (won by Sphephelo Nhlumayo and Philani Caumbe – Folweni U15; and Lungisani Simelane and Siyabonga Gcumisa, Esikhaleni U19).

Shoaib Moosa, the Chief Commercial Officer of Willowton Group said the tournament has become a symbol of sporting excellence, with affiliates Cricket South Africa, and coaches from across the country, using the performances displayed throughout the tournament as a yardstick to evaluate progress.

“We have been really amazed by the undeniable display of raw talent at this year’s tournament which was a tremendous success,” he said. “The tournament has grown in leaps and bounds from its humble beginnings in uMlazi when it featured mainly Durban-based teams. This year we welcomed, not only provincial representatives, but a national side as well.”

For the Western Province U15 and U19 teams, participating in the tournament meant undertaking a twenty hour journey by bus to Hilton College. But it was more than worth it, said Vukile Matakane, the assistant coach of the U19 team, for whom it was a first time experience.

“Wow – everything was well organised and planned,” he said. “The boys were well taken care of and I was so impressed by the African talent that I saw.” Likhona Gxwala, who is part of the under 19 team, has participated in four consecutive tournaments to date.

“We enjoy it so much and learn from the other players,” he said. “We made friends from other teams and eat nice food.”

Darryl Govender the head coach of the Chatsworth Hub echoed these sentiments. “I’m very impressed,” he said. “If you walked in as a neutral observer, you would not think that this was a rural tournament; you’d think you were at a national week.”

“It was very well organised, we were well catered for, all our demands were met – the KZNCU Township and Rural Development Programme can be very proud of what they have achieved.”

The post KZN teams dominate 2018 Township & Rural Development Tournament appeared first on Hollywoodbets Dolphins.

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