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Daniel Kennedy reports from South Africa

Tuesday, April 9th, 2019

Howzit from sunny Johannesburg, I started my stay at the prestigious St. Stithians School on the 16th January, where I was admitted into Mountstephens boarding house where I was met with a cluster of accommodating students and staff. They helped me a lot by showing me around the boarding house and the school, where I also met my host Thando Makwetu who used to captain Gauteng U15A which is the provincial team where I am staying, though they are a much higher standard than ours. Thando’s older brother Wandile Makwetu also played cricket. He was captain of South Africa’s U19 side on their tour of England last year and now plays for the Multiply Titans in Pretoria.

Daniel Kennedy presents Wim Jansen with a Munster cap

In my first week in the school I attended the same classes as my host. I found the school work a lot harder than Ireland, as they are a whole half year ahead of us. The school is amazing it has 4 different schools on its campus. At the Boys College we had 7 different cricket pitches, one of which was equipped with flood lights to play day/night matches and was overlooked by a beautiful restaurant with an honours board which had all the name of sportsmen and women who represented South Africa.

I was very lucky to get a chance to play there. The main pitch which the first team play on was stunning, the pitch was quick and bouncy, and the pavilion was really nice. The dressing rooms had jerseys of all the cricketers who represented South Africa at any level including Wiaan Mulder and Kagiso Rabada and next to that you had the cricket offices where I first met the Director of cricket at Saints, Wim Jansen who used to play at Pembroke with Ted Williamson. Mr Jansen was very helpful, and he was able to get me lots of game time.


The school day was very different to a typical school day in Ireland, but I loved the difference. I was in the boarding house so I would have to wake up at 6 to be ready for room checks at 6:40 we would then go to breakfast at 7:00 to start the day at 7:40. We would normally start with chapel where we would all gather for announcements or war cry’s which was great fun and it was amazing to see how passionate the boys were about their school, after which we would go to school until 2:40, as exchange students we were allowed to go down to the cricket nets during school hours to have private coaching session with Peter Stringer who used to play for Yorkshire. The sessions were very beneficial, and Mr Stringer had so much experience in the game it was great to be able to pick his brain.

The training was very tough in the beginning as it was hard to adapt to the hard-bouncy pitches, which also were a joy to bowl on. The high altitude, as Jo’burg sits at 1,750 metres, took some initial adjustment and the scorching heat didn’t help as it was consistently over 30 degrees, but I got used to it quickly.

Daniel Kennedy and Brandon Kruger in South Africa

I got to play 5 matches in Jo’burg for St. Stithians and I was lucky enough to play to 2 games for a club in Pretoria called Harlequins. Steve Kruger, who was here, at Cork County last season and will be returning again this summer was extremely helpful and I would like to thank him for setting up the games for me. He is also the Head Coach at Harlequins in Pretoria. The game time was invaluable, and I was able to learn a lot. The highlight of my matches was being able to play in a day/night match which was a great experience for myself and the other exchanges, who wouldn’t have the the facilities back home. It was amazing to play under the lights and to see what the ball does, it swung miles and because of the low pressure the ball was able to travel a lot further.

It was great to experience life outside of cricket in South Africa also, I was able to meet my cousins who live here, go on a game drive which is amazing as you can see animals in their natural habitats and the sunsets were beautiful. The food there was also excellent and it great to try all the foods my mother who is also from Jo’burg would have grown up on.

If anyone decides to visit this wonderful place I would definitely recommend trying, boerewors roll which is a bit like a hot dog, any good steak house as the flavouring the put on is amazing and spar letta Creme Soda is a great pairing for any food. I went home to the Makwetu’s nearly every weekend and I was welcomed by Thando’s parents, Miranda and Kimi Makwetu who were gracious and kind hosts and helped me with whatever I needed and were able to get Thando and I tickets to the Pink ODI at Wanderers. It was amazing to be part of such a momentous occasion and the atmosphere was electric and although South Africa lost, I had a great day. I’d like to thank the Makwetu’s for making my trip so great.


Just before I left South Africa St. Stithians 1st team had won the Johnny Waite Cup final, which is a big competition in Johannesburg, and the school that won would represent the Lions, which is the cricket franchise in Jo’burg, in the Coca-Cola T20 Schools competition in which the six best cricket schools in the country plus two development teams get pitted against each other at the end of the season in a cricket week.

I was amazed to see how much work went into to the competition. All the boys got amazing new kit complete with everything you could imagine, from match shirts to Coca-Cola head phones and at an opening ceremony they all received their certificates for their participation in the event. All the matches were live streamed on the cricket South Africa and PitchVision YouTube channel. The whole experience for the boys must have been invaluable, especially since St. Stithians won the competition for the 4th time in the six years it had been running.

They had a whole presentation and an interview with the captains. The whole idea of the structure of the tournament is to give the boys a taste of what the life of a professional cricketer might be like and it was great to see. The boys received cash prizes for man of the match or if they obtained batsman or bowler of the tournament, which I’m sure we’d appreciate here. All in all, it was great to see how this sort of thing was set up a got me thinking it would be quite easy to do if we got the right sponsorship here.


I thoroughly enjoyed my whole experience of being in South Africa and would love to go back again. The cricket experience I had here was invaluable and I hope to take it into the new season in Ireland. I would like to thank St. Stithians for allowing me into their school and to Mr Jansen and Mr Stringer for helping me with my cricket training and experience in the school and also to Mrs Gretchen Maruggi for organising the trip for me. Lastly, I’d like to thank the Makwetu Family for allowing into their home and to Thando and all the other boarders for making my time at Saints so wonderful.

Daniel Kennedy
Cork County CC & Bandon Grammar School

Cricket hits the Cork airwaves on the Opinion Line

Thursday, February 26th, 2015

Cork County’s Robert Duggan and Merrion Cricket Club’s Isobel Joyce among others joined PJ Coogan on 96FM’s Opinion Line to talk about the rise in popularity of cricket following Ireland’s heroics in the first two Pool games of the ICC Cricket World Cup.

Club member and stalwart Bertie Coleman passes away

Sunday, November 11th, 2012

It is with great sadness that the Club has been informed of the passing of Club member and stalwart Bertie Coleman after a long battle with cancer. Bertie passed away at 4 p.m. this afternoon and the Club would like to offer its sincerest condolences to his son Peter and his whole family. Bertie was a regular visitor to the Mardyke as a supporter in recent years and was of course well known in Munster cricket as an umpire for many years and will be greatly missed.

Removal will be taking place at 7 p.m. from O’Sullivans in Turners Cross to Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Ballinlough on Tuesday with the Requiem Mass on Wednesday at 1 p.m. Funeral will follow afterwards at St. Michael’s Cemetery, Blackrock. Family flowers only please. Donations, if desired, to the Mercy University Hospital Cancer Care. Full details will be available in the Irish Examiner on Monday, 12th November.

Some Tweets of condolences:

2012 Senior Averages

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

Cork County Cricket Club crestPlayer of the Year: Abubakar Saddique

Batsman of the Year: Sam Ward

Bowler of the Year: Abubakar Saddique

2012 Batting Averages

(100 run qualification)

Name Inns N.O. H.S. 50 100 Runs Average
Sam Ward 12 2 111 3 1 512 51.2
Morne Bauer 8 0 123 1 1 203 25.4
Robert Duggan 18 1 73 3 0 428 25.2
Chris Banon 10 1 58* 1 0 202 22.4
Abubakar Saddique 15 0 48 0 0 324 21.6
Ross Durity 15 1 55 1 0 283 20.2
Brad Morgan 13 3 36 0 0 173 17.3
Matt Reed 11 3 24* 1 0 124 15.5

2012 Bowling Averages

(No qualification)

Name Overs Maidens Runs Wkts. Average S/R Econ.
Abubakar Saddique 146 36 424 43 9.9 20.4 2.9
Ciarán Healy 117.4 16 443 25 17.7 28.2 3.8
Andrew Wootton 89 5 352 18 19.6 29.7 4.0
Robert Duggan 42 4 214 15 14.3 16.8 5.1
Tom Hughes 45.5 3 173 8 21.6 34.1 3.8
Matt Reed 30.2 1 187 8 23.4 22.7 6.2
Keith Banks 79.3 10 283 7 40.4 68.0 3.6
Morne Bauer 34.5 4 130 7 18.6 29.6 3.8
Hugh O’Brien 44 3 175 5 35.0 52.8 4.0
Faran Shahid 17 0 99 3 33.0 34.0 5.8
Nicky Murphy 10.5 0 52 3 17.3 21.0 5.0
Sam Ward 10 0 50 1 50.0 60.0 5.0
Parvez Ali 14 1 42 1 42.0 84.0 3.0

Cork County clinch the Munster Senior Cup in convincing fashion

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

Cork County completed a Munster Senior and Junior Cup double as they finished the 2012 season in impressive fashion by convincingly defeating Galway Cricket Club in the Munster show-piece final at the Mardyke. The Cup victory capped off another successful season in senior competitions, losing just one game in both league and cup which is was a fantastic effort considering the poor weather which prevented the Leesiders gaining any form of momentum throughout the season.

After losing the toss, Cork County were put in to bat by Galway Captain Danesh Ali who was hoping to capitalise on any early seam movement on a good looking wicket at the Mardyke. However, after the early losses of Captain Ross Durity and Brad Morgan the Leesiders began to take the initiative with Stephen Stone (57) and Robert Duggan (22) striking some impressive shots to both sides of the wicket and dampening the early Galway enthusiasm. They were followed by an exhilarating innings from Man of the Match Morne Bauer who took the game out of reach of the Connacht men with a fantastic knock of 123, peppering the boundary at the Mardyke on regular occasions. A brief cameo from veteran Andy Wootton (27*) helped County to an impressive total of 288-8.

In reply, Galway needed to get off to a steady start but were unable to deal with the craft and guile of Abubaker Saddique who tore through the top order with a devastating spell of bowling finishing with figures of 6 for 20 including the possibility of hat-trick. Galway had no answer to County’s left orthodox bowler and they breathed a sigh of relief when he completed his 10 overs with the Connacht men teetering on 50-6. A resolute fightback from Galway’s star man Waqqas Raja (69) and Umair (26) gave a bit of respectability to their total but once Waqqas was caught and bowled by Reed the tail soon folded and Galway were finally bowled out for 167 in the 40th over.

Munster Senior Cup Final

Cork County 288-8 beat Co. Galway 167 all out by 121 runs at the Mardyke scorecard

Full Cup Final Gallery

Munster League Tables (9th September)

Friday, September 14th, 2012

The 2012 season is coming to a close and so the destination of the Division 1 title needs to be decided. Impressively Cork County remain unbeaten having completed 7 matches amassing a total 54 bonus points from a possible 56 which is indeed an excellent return. Despite the poor weather all summer  and the MCU’s insistence that percentages won’t be used, it a tribute the Cork County 1 that they remain the favourites to clinch their third consecutive title in three years. County have a game in hand over their local rivals Cork Harlequins and so their destiny is in their own hands.

Cork Harlequins 1 12 9 2 0 1 74 262
Cork County 1 11 7 0 0 4 54 226
Co. Galway 11 6 3 0 2 51 187
Limerick Raiders 13 4 7 0 2 52 148
Midleton 1  * 14 4 8 0 2 47 143
Waterford I.T. 13 1 10 0 2 29 65
* Deducted 5 points. No text result.
Co. Clare 11 8 0 0 3 59 243
Cork Harlequins 2 11 7 2 0 2 57 213
W’ford & District 10 5 4 0 1 35 143
Cork County 2 10 3 2 0 5 27 127
Co. Kerry 1 11 3 4 0 4 29 121
Nenagh 11 2 7 0 2 29 85
Midleton 2 9 0 7 0 2 -3 13
Limerick 12 7 4 0 1 69 217
Cork Harlequins 3 11 6 2 0 3 45 189
Thurles 12 6 3 0 3 52 196
Co. Clare 2 10 5 1 0 4 38 170
Cork County 3  * 12 4 4 0 4 29 121
Cork County 4 11 1 6 0 4 13 65
Co. Kerry 2 * 12 0 9 0 3 4 28
Lismore ** 0
* No returned scorecard. No points awarded.
** Lismore are deemed to have withdrawn from Div 3. All games involving Lismore are deemed null & void.

Munster Junior Cup Final: Cork County 2 v Limerick match report

Sunday, August 26th, 2012

Having beaten Midleton in the quarter final and Galway in the semi final County 2 took on Limerick on an overcast day at Farmer’s Cross.

Heavy overnight rainfall meant that the start of the game was delayed from 12 noon to 1p.m. however no overs were lost at this stage.

Limerick captain Kevin Hennessy won the toss and chose to bat first on the artificial wicket. Justin McGurk(2-17) and Hugh O’Brien(0-18) opened the bowling for the Cork side.

Tahir Saqib was first to fall for Limerick bowled by McGurk for 7.

Ninja Srinivisan soon followed when opening batsman Shane Burke called for what looked like an easy single to Nicky Murphy at mid-wicket. However a good stop and a direct hit from Murphy brought Srinivisan’s innings to an end without even facing a delivery.

Limerick now needed a good partnership to steady the ship and they got one; Shane Burke(28) and Hashir Sultan(35) hitting some big shots(including three sixes) on their way to a fifty partnership.

Matt Reed(1-38) had replaced O’Brien at the Pavilion End while leg-spinner Nicky Murphy relieved McGurk at the Road End. The Cork side finally broke up the third wicket partnership when Shane Burke edged behind to Ian Coleman off the bowling off Matt Reed.

Bharath(32) now joined Sultan at the crease and both batsman attempted big shots off the bowling of Ciaran Healy(3-39) and Matt Reed. It was Healy who made the breakthrough when a slog sweep by Sultan was caught by Chris Banon at deep square-leg.

Nicky Murphy returned from the Pavilion end and it took him just two balls to dismiss Asif(0), Brad Morgan taking an excellent catch at short extra-cover.

Limerick were now 114-5 and things got worse for them when big-hitter Bharath was bowled by Healy.

Fassey Ahmed soon followed, caught by County skipper Niall Tynan off McGurk for 8.

The final three Limerick wickets fell quite quickly, John Daly(3) bowled by Healy while Stephen Hackett and Kevin Hennessy both fell to Nicky Murphy for 1 and 2 respectively.

This left Limerick 139 all out in 33 overs, a considerable achievement given the damp conditions.

The weather had held out for almost all of the first innings but just as the teams were about to retake the field a massive shower arrived and after a delay of over an hour to allow the ground to dry somewhat the umpires decided that conditions were playable and that play could continue.

Due to the delay the target had to be revised and scorers Kevin O’Sullivan and Declan Earley calculated that the magic number was now 65 from 20 overs.

Darren Fogarty(4) and Chris Banon(25) opened the batting for County and went for it from the start, Banon hitting a couple of boundaries and with the addition of wides the Cork side were reached 21 before the first wicket fell, Fogarty skying one which was caught by Limerick ‘keeper Shane Burke.

Brad Morgan(8) joined Banon at the crease but their partnership did not last long, the opening batsman bowled by Bharath via a thick inside edge.

Good shots by Morgan and Ian Coleman(13*) aswell as a number of wides brought County to within 12 of the target when Morgan was run out, a sharp throw from mid-wicket bringing his innings to a close.

As it turned out new batsman Matt Reed did not have to face a ball, Coleman hitting one through mid-off for four, four overthrows, a few wides and a final two through the extra-cover region finishing the game off for Cork County 2 and making them the 2012 Munster Junior Cup champions.

A special thanks must go to Harlequins C.C. for providing their ground for the game and to members of Cork County who came up to Farmer’s Cross to support the team.

Munster League Tables (29th July)

Friday, August 10th, 2012

Cork Harlequins 1 8 6 1 0 1 50 178
Limerick Raiders 10 4 4 0 2 41 137
Cork County 1 7 3 0 0 4 22 114
Co. Galway 7 3 3 0 1 34 102
Midleton 1 10 2 6 0 2 28 84
Waterford I.T. 8 1 5 0 2 23 59
Co. Clare 8 5 0 0 3 37 161
Cork Harlequins 2 9 5 2 0 2 44 160
W’ford & District 7 4 2 0 1 28 116
Co. Kerry 1 10 2 3 0 5 19 99
Cork County 2 8 2 1 0 5 16 96
Nenagh 9 1 6 0 2 21 57
Midleton 2 7 0 5 0 2 3 19
Limerick 12 8 3 0 1 71 239
Thurles 12 6 4 0 2 54 190
Cork Harlequins 3 11 6 2 0 3 44 188
Co. Clare 2 10 5 2 0 3 39 163
Cork County 3  * 10 3 3 0 3 26 110
Cork County 4 9 2 5 0 2 19 75
Lismore 11 2 7 0 2 9 65
Co. Kerry 2 * 11 1 8 0 2 9 45
* No returned scorecard. No points awarded.
Including  weekend 28-29 July, 2012

Munster Junior Cup Semi-Final: Cork County 2 v Galway 2 – Match Report

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Cork County Cricket Club crestCounty 2 took on Galway in the Junior Cup semi-final at the Mardyke on Saturday the 28th of July. County captain Niall Tynan won the toss and asked Galway to bat on what was a warm but showery day at the ‘Dyke.

Justin McGurk(2-8) opened the bowling from the City End and made an immediate impact, forcing Galway opener Umair(0) to direct one to Kevin Bray at mid-wicket who took an excellent catch after just four deliveries.

Unfortunately it was at that moment that it began to rain and the teams had to come off for 20 minutes not allowing County to continue the momentum which they had gained with the first wicket.

When the teams did come back out seamers Justin McGurk and Hugh O’Brien(0-14) continued and it was McGurk who claimed the Galway’s second wicket, Nitin hit on the pads by a full toss from McGurk and given out lbw.

M.Ali(18) and Sajal(7) steadied things for the visitors but before the second rain delay of the innings Matt Reed(2-20) took the wicket of Ali, the right-handed bat edging behind to Coleman.

After another rain delay this one 30 minutes long, things got worse for Galway, Waqqas(2) lifting one straight up in the air off Ciarán Healy, Nicky Murphy taking the catch at mid-on.

Danish(2) was run out after some sharp fielding by Nicky Murphy and Khan(6) soon followed, again run out but this time more due to some casual running between the wickets and not running his bat in.

Galway were now in deep trouble and it was left to Rohit Bisla(28*) to try to put some runs on the board. Two boundaries off Reed and one off Chris Banon(0-10) brought some much needed runs for the Connacht side.

Two more wickets fell in quick succession, Arunbabo(0) was out lbw off Reed and R.Mahon(1) was out caught by Tim Clifford off the bowling of Healy.

This left Galway nine wickets down and the innings soon finished, Ted Turton(3) bowled by Nicky Murphy(1-4). That left Cork County with a target of 82 which seemed quite an easy task given the conditions and the speed of the outfield.

Umpire Michael Hickey decided to postpone lunch and instead brought the teams back out after just 10 minutes.

Tim Clifford and Steve Smith opened the batting for the home side but their partnership did not last long, Clifford(0) lifting a short delivery to square-leg for a routine catch.

Wicketkeeper- batsman Ian Coleman came in at three for the Leesiders and played very solidly while at the other end Smith hit both opening bowlers Waqqas and Danish to all parts of the ground.

A change of bowling for the visitors did not stop Smith scoring steadily and it required another change in bowling before a breakthrough was finally made, Smith(32) directing one to point off the bowling of medium-pacer Khan.

Things got worse for the home side when Chris Banon departed the very next ball, the left-hander edging to the Galway ‘keeper.

Vice-captain Kevin Bray(2) joined Coleman at the crease and got off the mark straight away with an on drive for a couple before being given out lbw, again off Khan.

County however needed only 28 to win at this stage and patient batting from Coleman(14*) and Matt Reed(12*) saw County home, Reed dispatching an above waist height no ball to the square-leg boundary to seal victory for the home side and secure them a place in the final against Limerick C.C. on Sunday August 12th.

MCU Division 3: Limerick Vs Cork County 3 match report

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Cork County Cricket Club crestCork County 3 travelled to the Manor Fields in Adare on a sunny July Saturday to take on Limerick C.C. in Munster Division 3. The teams had already met this season with Limerick gaining a 1 wicket victory over the Leesiders in the Mardyke in June.

Cork County captain James McCarthy was unavailable due to work commitments so vice-captain Kevin O’Sullivan skippered the side. He won the spin of the coin and chose to bowl first on the artificial wicket.
Opening bowlers Hugh O’Brien (1-12) and Narsa Renjarla (3-7) made good use of the new ball squaring the batsmen up and forcing them to play at it almost every delivery. It was Renjarla who made the first breakthrough bowling Shane Burke for 3.

The other opening batsman John Linehan (2) soon followed, also bowled but this time by O’Brien. Renjarla picked up another wicket before he completed his four over spell, clipping Hashir Sultan’s(1) off stump with a delivery which swung back in to the right hander.

Kevin O’Sullivan now brought Aidan Kelleher (3-19) and John Kelly (2-13) into the attack for County and they both picked up a wicket early in their spells, Kelleher bowling Ninja Srinuksan for 1 and Malik Adnan (1) driving straight to Peter Barlow at short extra cover off the bowling of Kelly.

Things got even better for County when Aidan Kelleher bowled John Daly round his legs for a golden duck and five deliveries later he had James Murphy (0) out lbw, trying to swipe across his legs. Limerick skipper Kevin Hennessy (0) tried to steady the situation but was out after just four deliveries, Kelly getting one to swing back in and take out middle-stump.

Samar Sultan(21) decided that at 23-8 it was time to put some runs on the board and hit two sixes and a four off Kelleher in the 14th over. O’Sullivan decided to bring back opening bowlers Narsa Renjarla and Hugh O’Brien and it was Renjarla who got the crucial wicket of Samar Sultan, knocking back his middle-stump.

Eoghan O’Sullivan was run out three balls later attempting a suicidal single and Limerick were all out for 53.
While the target looked quite a small one the Limerick bowlers made it hard for County, Hashir Sultan (1-20) bowled a good eight over spell from the Scoreboard End and County openers Narsa Renjarla (2) and Peter Barlow had to settle for quick singles.

James Murphy(1-21) bowled from the other end and with the final delivery of his second over he bowled Renjarla, deceiving him with a slower ball. Bryn Nelmes came to the crease for the visitors and succeeded in accelerating the run rate, hitting three boundaries on his way to 20 before he skied one to mid-off, the fielder taking an excellent catch.

Nelmes had brought County to within 16 runs of victory and Ian Coleman (12*) and opener Peter Barlow (9*) saw it through for County, Coleman hitting a boundary through the covers to win it for the Leesiders, giving them an 8 wicket win and their sixth straight victory.