Ecclestone stars as England beat SA to World Cup trophy
Alan Dawson smashed a brisk 92, but in the end it proved in vain as England beat South Africa by 65 runs to win the 2023 Over-50 Cricket World Cup on Monday.
The two sides had played out a close encounter in the group stages seven days ago but, truth be told, England dominated proceedings at Newlands Cricket Ground pretty much from the word go.
With the game delayed and reduced to 40 overs after heavy morning showers, Proteas Veterans captain Louis Koen won the toss and opted to bowl first.
Unlike at Groot Drakenstein a week ago, the hosts were unable to get an early breakthrough as Dawson and James Albanie went wicketless in their opening spell for the first time during the tournament.
Giles Ecclestone was the man the innings was built around, with the elegant left-hander forming partnerships all the way through en route to a majestic 122 off 103 deliveries.
Along with Naseer Ahmed he put on 88 for the fourth wicket in just over 10 overs to assert control and ultimately set a very challenging target of 268.
Clive Eksteen was South Africa’s best bowler, returning very respectable figures of 8-0-25-2 amid the carnage.
The Proteas needed a good start if they were to get close, so the wicket of Koen off just the fourth delivery without a run on the board was hardly what the doctor ordered.
It proved a sign of things to come as they just couldn’t string together any meaningful partnerships and, even when Dawson found an ally in Mario Solomons and combined for 72, it was too little, too late.
Richard Cooper and Martyn Gidley did most of the damage, both picking up 3/39 as England cantered to victory in almost pitch-dark conditions, becoming only the second country after Australia to win the Over-50 World Cup, which was once again proudly sponsored by Evergreen Lifestyle.
The 2023 Over-50s Cricket World Cup will once again be sponsored by Evergreen Lifestyle, South Africa’s premium retirement brand with seven operating villages in the Western Cape and Gauteng, and a further six in the pipeline. The business began with a vision to change the retirement landscape in South Africa, offering a partnership for life based on five key pillars: physical security, financial peace of mind, continuous care, a sense of community and exceptional hospitality.
You’ll find Evergreen’s award-winning retirement villages in the most beautiful parts of the country, at the end of sun dappled country lanes, perched on majestic mountain slopes, and within walking distance of our beaches, rivers, and wetlands. And you’ll find vibrant fun-loving communities enjoying the finer things in life – like good food, great company, lasting friendships, and a sense of belonging that is enabled by the resort-style facilities and amenities on offer.