Alfred Mothoa, Eldred Hawken, Rivaldo Moonsamy and Tony de Zorzi have each signed their first professional contracts with the Multiply Titans, committing themselves to the Franchise until the conclusion of the 2017/18 season.
The Northerns quartet have signed one-year deals after impressing in a season where the senior side won the CSA Provincial One-Day Challenge and finished joint Sunfoil Three-Day Cup winners with Free State.
Pace duo Mothoa and Hawken, both 27 and mainstays in the Northerns senior side since 2013, have progressed to the Franchise side, making their debuts across the four-day and 50-over formats.
Mothoa, a home-grown player from Hammanskraal, made his Sunfoil Series debut in the final match of the season, returning 1-26 and 3-57 as Titans secured a four-wicket win against the Warriors. Mothoa enjoyed a personal best season with the red ball, taking 24 first-class wickets at an average of 17.62 in the three-day competition.
With his ability to strike with the new ball, Hawken’s 21 List A wickets include debut figures of 3 for 40 against the bizhub Highveld Lions in the Momentum One Day Cup in February. Having played for the Titans in the longer format, the right-armer has garnered 111 first-class wickets at an average of 20.12 in a combination of Northerns and Titans matches.
Multiply Titans assistant coach Mandla Mashimbyi believes the Franchise is in a good place with the current squad.
“Alfred is a good example of someone who puts in the work. For the last four years he’s been grafting and trying to break into the professional side and it is great to see him put ink on paper for the Multiply Titans - I’m really happy for him.
“When he played for the Titans - we gave him a simple mandate to go out and take wickets - and he went out and did it with flying colours,” said Mashimbyi.
“Eldred is an X-factor. He brings pace and can bat and is a highly talented cricketer. He is richly deserving of his contract because of the performances that he’s put in with the amateurs in the last three years.”
“It shows the resilience that the guys have got - they could have easily said no I’ve had enough I’ll go and try somewhere else. But, because of the structures and the environment we have within our union, players are willing to stay and bid their time until the opportunity presents itself.”
De Zorzi and Moonsamy, both South Africa Under 19 international batsmen, impressed with a series of standout performances for Northerns.
Although only 19 years of age, the former enjoyed a breakthrough season which saw the left-hander make his Franchise debut in both the four-day and 50-over competitions last season. In his first year with Northerns, de Zorzi averaged 79.20 in the Sunfoil Three-Day Cup, amassing 396 runs, including two hundreds and one fifty.
Moonsamy, meanwhile emerged form the amateur side to make his limited-overs debut in the opening match of the Momentum One Day Cup against the Hollywoodbets Dolphins, where he scored 68 off just 46 balls. Batting in the middle-order, the wicketkeeper finished Northerns’ leading run-scorer in the three-day competition, hitting 546 runs at an average of 49.63.
“Tony and Rivaldo are young, energetic and wanting to learn all the time and we’re looking at them as the next crop for Titans cricket - and they’ve given us more than we actually expected. Both have shown they are capable batsman in first-class cricket.”
Multiply Titans have also signed Andrea Agathangelou from the BuildNat Cape Cobras, on a one-year contract. A right-handed batsman, with the ability to bowl spin, the 27-year-old will bring with him overseas experience, having previously played English County Cricket for Lancashire and Leicestershire.
The Rustenburg-born player has scored 3484 first-class runs at average of 35.19, including a highest score of 199 not out.
Elsewhere, Tabraiz Shamsi and Chris Morris, who were rewarded first time national contracts in March, complete the eight South African Internationals who have committed themselves to the Franchise.
The full list of Multiply Titans contracted players are:
Shaun von Berg
Tony de Zorzi
AB de Villiers
Quinton de Kock
Faf du Plessis