The United States of America is fast becoming a choice destination for professional cricketers and it is even becoming home to several South African players.
In total there are four players, who up until recently have still represented the Itec Knights, plying their trade in America.
These players are the batsmen, Obus Pienaar and Andries Gous, and the seamers, Shadley van Schalkwyk and Corné Dry.
Pienaar and Gous in particular have impressed with the willow in the Toyota Minor League Cricket Championship that gets played across several states in America.
As it stands, Pienaar is the leading run-scorer in the league with 313 runs in eight matches for the St. Louis Americans. Gous is hot on his heels in second, and in turn has scored 273 in seven innings for the Seattle Thunderbolts. Gous boasts with the better batting average of the two. With 12 fours and 22 sixes Gous has also smashed the most boundaries in the tournament.
Gous told Bloemfontein Courant that he is delighted with his form as well as that of Pienaar.
“It’s been going really well for myself personally and as you can see, for Obus as well. He has been leading the batting charts. It’s really good to see that the South Africans are leading the charts in the country. The cricket is going really well and I am happy with the form that I’m in.
“All of us would probably say that we are surprised with the quality of cricket in the USA. There are some real quality cricketers here and the competition is strong.
“It’s really good to see that there’s already a competitive competition in the USA, because next year the Major League will start and it will be extremely competitive.
“Even guys like Shadley and Corné are doing really well on the bowling side of things and I think that they can be really happy with how their tournament has been going thus far.
“It’s really good to see all the ‘manne’ taking charge over here.
Van Schalkwyk is a teammate of Gous in Seattle, while Dry, the younger brother of the recently retired Blitzbok stalwart Chris Dry, is playing for Atlanta Fire. – MORGAN PIEK