It’s not every day that you hear of a Matie getting chosen to play for the national team of another country. On this rare occasion, the star is Brandon Glover, a 22 year old Accounting graduate, originally from Johannesburg.
He came to Stellenbosch in 2016 as a first year and almost immediately started playing for the Maties Cricket team as a fast bowler. This meant he represented the Maties team at the Varsity Cricket tournament. In that same year he was also selected to represent the University Sports Students Association (USSA) team as they played in the Future Cup.
In November of 2016 he signed a contract with the Boland team and has played nine first class matches for them over the past three seasons. But how did a talented young South African end up in the Netherlands playing cricket?
Glover, who has been playing cricket ever since he can remember said, “A mate of mine with a Dutch passport had gone over to play club cricket there, and he suggested that I try it out too. I also have a Dutch passport because my mom is Dutch.”
This same friend then passed his number on to the coach of the Dutch National Team, Ryan Campbell, a former Australian cricketer. Glover’s life changed in February of last year when Campbell got in touch with him and invited him to come and train with the Dutch squad who, at that time, had been in Johannesburg training in preparation for the International Cricket World Cup (ICC) qualifiers.
Having impressed Campbell so much, Glover was also invited to play for the Voorburg cricket club, based in The Hague. He then had the opportunity, during June and July of last year, to play for the club, as well as train with the Dutch National squad.
It was only in April of this year that he could sign a contract with the Dutch side, after his contract with Boland came to an end.He has since played for the Dutch side in their series against Zimbabwe in June of this year, taking a total of five wickets over the course of two ODIs and two T20s.
Glover said the cricket culture in the Netherlands is very different to South Africa. “It’s not as popular, but it is picking up.” As an example, he said that nowhere in the Netherlands is there a stadium comparable to Newlands or Kingsmead.
“But they’re planning to build one, which says a lot about where they want cricket to go.” Glover says he is excited to be included in the Amsterdam Knights team taking part in the 2019 Euro T20 Slam, held in September, where he will be in a team with cricket legends like Imran Tahir and Shane Watson.