The CSA Provincial Three-Day Challenge is one of many domestic competitions in South Africa. There is also the CSA Provincial One-Day Challenge, the CSA Provincial T20 Series, The SuperSport Series, the South Africa One Day Competition, and the South Africa T20 Competition.
(The latter two tournaments lack sponsorship in this go ’round, hence the generic names).
I was unable to find a great deal of information on the CSA competitions. I just really loved the names involved in the above match. Boland… Border… Paarl…. They are just so, I don’t know, post-apocalyptically sci-fi. Like they are set in the distant future, when humanity is hanging on by the thinnest of threads, and those from the Boland region travel across the frontier to the Paarl crossroads to challenge their fierce enemies from Border in a smashing game of cricket.
Yeah, that is how I think about most things.
Anyway, there was not a great deal to be found on the CSA tourneys. In fact, the teams above cannot even be found in Cricinfo’s CSA Three Day Competition points table.
But a couple quick notes on South African cricket: it has gone through several major overhauls over the last 30 years, as the country grew into its post-Apartheid image. There have been a ridiculous number of competitions through the years: The Benson & Hedges Series, The Standard Bank Cup, the Standard Bank League, the MTN Domestic Competition, the MTN40, the Gillette Cup, the Datsun Shield (woah…remember Datsun!?), the Nissan Shield, and the Total Power Series – and those are just the one dayers.
Currently, the one day series has been expanded to 50 overs to match the length of the international version of the one day match, and as in most countries, their T20 tournament is quickly overtaking the other competitions in popularity.
The SuperSport series is their first class, four day tournament, and according to Cricinfo, those matches maintain the village atmosphere similarly scene in first class tournaments around the globe. And if I were to attend a cricket match in South Africa, I think that is the competition I would seek out. Of course, I might be the only one there…but there is just something so intruiging about domestic first class cricket. I think it is tremendously important to the world wide success of the game in all its formats.
Back on the pitch, and in the glaring floodlights of the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, India, the second semi-final in the Nokia Champions League Twenty20 is just about to start. It features the Mumbai Indians from India against Somerset from jolly old England. Honestly, it should be a rather decent match. The first semi-final between Royal Challengers Bangalore and New South Wales ended in favor of the former.
The final is set for tomorrow.
Just to bring this back home, two South African domestic teams, the Cape Cobras and the Warriors took place in the Champions League this season. They each finished second to bottom in their respective groups and are more than likely on their way back home.
However, the Warriors captain, Johan Botha, a fine one-day all-rounder, once played for the cricket powerhouse of: Border.
Captain Botha of the Warriors, brings his Border Men from the lowlands across the Frontier to meet the strange band of stragglers from Boland in an ancient game of bat, ball, and….oh nevermind.