If you happen to visit Google and hit the following words – Mignon Du Preez – you’d be guided, apart from tons of information about the former Protea Women’s captain, to a series of videos containing quick responses to myriad questions. 

Sporting the quintessential smile, one that reflects something honest and so South African- pure and endearing- Mignon responds to a question as only she can: 

“What advice would you give to kids looking to play cricket?”

You can hear her say, “ I would say that is the best thing that happened to me. I fell in love with the sport at 4. It’s the best thing that I’ve done in my life.”

This is particularly because, just a few hours earlier, Mignon played a knock which could be clubbed among her best ODI efforts. 

Against Sri Lanka, helping her side to claim the third and thus, the final ODI in the series, the dependable middle order bat struck a vital 61 and remained unbeaten till the end. 

In so doing, the right hander, someone with over 120 ODIs against her name, scored her 14th half century. 

From 87 balls, the ever-smiling batswoman collected 61 runs, an effort that not only settled some tense moments for her side but also helped chase down a target that saw her ultimately contribute nearly 40-50 per cent of the side’s needed score. 

A well-paced knock, a timely one at that

What’s more, the well-paced knock, that also brought Mignon Du Preez’ average to nearer to 33, also provided her Protea Women the cushion of comfort. 

This was of importance especially since the South African skipper – Dane van Niekerk- who’d been in great form had missed the final against the Lankans, thus proving why there’s no substitute for experience and rigor. 

What’s more?

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Even before she padded up and anchored her beloved South Africa to victory albeit in a contest where the Sri Lankan batting seemed frivolous, the 29-year-old clinched a brilliant catch at point and sent fiery Lankan opener Weerakkody packing. 

That Sune Luus stood up for the Proteas, by fracturing the Sri Lankan spine, removing the middle and lower-middle order courtesy a four-for only helped strengthen Proteas Women’s standing in the game.

Later, Mignon would unfurl the familiar composure that has become synonymous with the Pretorian. The rest, as one saw, made Sri Lankans to make something out of a lost cause- history.

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