Lizaad Williams was the best bowler on show in the Sunfoil Series match between the Cape Cobras and the Warriors on either side, but did not receive the statistical rewards for his splendid efforts, said Rory Kleinveldt, bowling consultant of the hosts at Newlands.
The Warriors, resuming on 12 for one on Thursday, finished on 229 for two in their second innings of their Sunfoil Series clash against the Cape Cobras after the home side had declared their first innings closed on a mammoth 530 for eight on Wednesday.
“When you bowl at his pace – above 140 km/h – and keep the batsmen on the back foot, you are going to ruffle some feathers. If he continues in this vain, he will get the rewards later on in the season. He did not receive the awards today (on Thursday),” Kleinveldt said.
Williams nipped out 4-54 in 23.5 overs in the first innings. His fast bowling colleague Michael Cohen nabbed 5-107 in only his second franchise game in 21 overs.
The 19-year-old Cohen is a very exciting talent, Kleinveldt remarked.
“He bowls in excess of 140 km/h. He will run in all day,” said the former SA fast bowler, who added that the young swing bowler Cohen is not the finished product yet.
“We need to work on a few things. He is a good kid and he works extremely hard at his bowling,” Kleinveldt added.
Cohen, understandably elated about his first five-wicket haul in franchise cricket, said there was nothing magical about it. “I ran in and gave it my all with each delivery, hoping to extract something from the wicket. Occasionally my rhythm felt good,” he added.
Cohen’s evolution is remarkable. He produced a match-haul of 6-49 last season in his first first-class game (for Western Province) and made his debut for the Cobras against the VKB Knights a week ago despite his obvious inexperience.
“Lizaad bowled superbly,” Cohen said about his fellow spearhead. “The skills he produced when he pitched it up was something else. He beat the inside of the bat or the outside and created edges and chances.
“He could have run through the top-order today (on Thursday),” Cohen said admiringly about the WSB Cape Cobras spearhead.
“Michael got a bit or reverse swing going, but the thing I liked the most about him was the intensity he showed with every delivery,” said Dane Piedt, the WSB Cape Cobras skipper.
Williams is a former South African U19 bowler who showed his mettle at the ICC U19 World Cup in Australasia.
He came of age in franchise cricket in 2016/2017. His controlled aggression in the first innings and his opening burst on Thursday confirmed that he can become a menacing presence with the new ball for the Cape Cobras.