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October 23, 2005
At Chatsworth in Durban KwaZulu-Natal secured the double over the Zimbabwe Under-23s with a big 103-run win in their 45-over clash. Sent in to bat Natal totalled 291 for 7 with Kyle Smit striking 75 off 52 balls and Robert Frylinck smashing five boundaries and six sixes in his 82 not out off 51 balls. Despite a near run-a-ball 65 from Mark Vermeulen Zimbabwe were never in the game and were eventually bowled out for 188 in 41 overs. The legspin of Tyron Pillay again caused problems as he picked up 3 for 30.
A close encounter in East London resulted in Boland walking away with the spoil in a tense six-run win over Border. Seventies from Henry Davis and Shane Summers allowed Boland to post 241 for 9 when their overs ran out. Murray Ranger, the Border captain, was once again among the wickets as he picked up a career best 4 for 42. Border started off well but a collapse, from 63 for 1 to 85 for 5, set them back as Bardo Fransman picked up three quick wickets. A final effort from Ranger (56 not out) and Shane de Kock (32 not out) brought Border to within six runs when they ran out of overs.
Free State also completed the double over their arch rivals Griqualand West winning by a comfortable margin of 90 runs. Batting first in Kimberley, Free State scored 269 for 6 thanks to a 88 not out from Dillon de Preez and a 53 not out from Roger Telemachus. Their 128-run partnership came in the final 13 overs of the innings. Griqualand West did not get a good start, and at 86 for 7 were all but out of the match. An unbeaten 50 from Donovan Donaldson, batting at No. 8, gave the Griquas' score some respectability as they ended on 179, bowled out in 36.4 overs.
A gutting loss to England, after leading the series 1-0, has thrown up some glaring inadequacies in the Indian team but there is little being said or done in terms of improvement
His rapid improvement with the ball has been integral to England coming from behind to lead the series - but that is just one area where Moeen Ali continues to impress
After 8-0, MS Dhoni could look forward to building a team from scratch; now, there is nothing left for him to contribute. Free him from the Test captaincy and he could yet give back in other ways
For all MS Dhoni's many trophies and accomplishments, Test cricket continues to resist his magic and indefinitely postpone his motorbike ride into the sunset
His decisions in the England series have seemed to confirm that he does not care too much for the Test game. Maybe he should be concentrating on the World Cup
Why does the man who is possibly England's greatest fast bowler occasionally turn into Mr Hyde on the field?