Reeza Hendricks sets up Jozi Stars victory over CT Blitz

The Proteas top order batsmen amassed his 79 runs off just 48 balls, which included six sixes and five fours.

Jozi Stars' player Reeza Hendricks. Picture: @StarsJozi/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Reeza Hendricks continued his rich vein of form by powering his way to 79 runs off just 48 balls to set up the Jozi Stars for a 50-run and a bonus-point win over Mzansi Super League frontrunners the Cape Town Blitz at Newlands.

Hendricks came into the match after back-to-back centuries in his previous two games which shot him into the lead in terms of runs scored in the competition.

The Proteas top order batsmen amassed his 79 runs off just 48 balls, which included six sixes and five fours. Hendricks, alongside Rassie van der Dussen (44), Dan Christian (22) and Pite van Biljon (22), helped the Stars reach an impressive 196-4 after winning the toss and electing to bat.

The chase from the Cape Town Blitz was a tame affair, as they were restricted to 146 all out, with Aussie all-rounder Daniel Christian the pick of the bowlers with 4/22.

The win sees the Stars leapfrog the Nelson Mandela Bay Giants into the second spot on the table and are now just five points behind the Blitz.

Hendricks was asked about the hype after his batting feats.

“Over the last few days, it has been overwhelming, but in saying that after tonight, the game is done so we have to refocus on the next day and the next game coming up. As I move on, I put this behind me and carry on and try to contribute again in the next game.”

He says he hopes his T20 form will be factored in for World Cup selection.

“I don’t think so, to be honest, this is obviously a different format. I’d love to think it has some impact towards it, but like I say, it’s a different format. As it comes leading up to the World Cup it’s still a while away, so hopefully, I can continue scoring closer to the time. I think the rest will take care of itself.”

Hendricks was asked if this is the best he has ever played.

“I think it’s a purple patch I’m going through at the moment and I’m quite grateful for how it is going and what’s happening at the moment.”

Blitz skipper Farhaan Behardien shared his thoughts on Hendricks's form.

“His drive wasn’t as high in the beginning and he kind of caught up, and he’s in form; he’s in the form of his life. It’s his time at the moment and we couldn’t combat him tonight.”

Behardien admitted the batting has been too top heavy of late.

“That’s very evident to see that we haven’t done well as a middle order unit. Our bowling has been really strong and our top has been really strong. It was tough tonight, we needed 14 runs an over from the get-go, so there was pressure straight away. The wicket quickened up and the bowlers made a tough, faster score and they were very street-smart and made a lot of changeups.”

He also added that it was just the Stars batters’ night.

“As I’ve mentioned, the Jozi Stars batsmen are in form and the balls seem to ping tonight to all parts of the ground, especially towards the scoreboard side with the wind. In hindsight, maybe we could have brought a bit more changeups, but even saying that we had our plans and the balls were flying and it wasn’t our night tonight.”

(Edited by Mihlali Ntsabo)