Warriors opening batsman Eddie Moore has taken his young professional cricketing career to a whole new level with back to back centuries in the opening two rounds of the Sunfoil Series 4-day competition. Eddie withstood everything Proteas strike bowler Kagiso Rabada could throw at him in a superb knock of 115 against the Highveld Lions in the season-opener at the Wanderers. It was his 5th first class hundred but more importantly his first at Franchise level.
The 24 year-old Grey High School product shared in a 179 run partnership for the first wicket with David White as he helped the Warriors to a massive first innings total of 503 for 8 declared. The Warriors were able to control the game from there and although the match ended in a draw, it was the Warriors who came out well on top in the bonus point stakes.
A week later at his home ground at St Georges Park, Eddie Moore was making runs again – scoring exactly 100 against the Cape Cobras. Backed up by Jerry Nqolo’s century this time, Moore ensured that the Warriors were able to declare their first innings on 452 for six, a position from which they were also able to dominate before time ran out and another draw was called. Significantly, all six matches in the first two rounds of the Sunfoil Series were drawn, raising question marks about the standard of the pitches so early in the season. It does not detract, however, from a quality batting performance from Eddie Moore. For his first two centuries at franchise level, back to back no less, Sport Elizabeth is very proud to honour Eddie Moore as our homegrown hero for the month of October.
Congratulations Eddie, this must be a very proud moment in your career?
It is yes, and thank you very much for honouring me. Its been a great fortnight to kick off the new four day season and I’ve really enjoyed it. The key now is just to ride the wave, stay in the present and not get too carried away. I’ve got my goals and I’m mindful of staying focussed otherwise its going to lead to complacency and disappointment.
Wise words indeed – spoken like someone who has been around for a while?
Well, this is my second full season with the Warriors now and I’ve played every single four-day match as a fulltime member of the team. I was 22 when I played my first two Sunfoil Series matches at the backend of that season so I’d like to think I’ve started maturing as a cricketer.
Your Warriors debut came even earlier than the back end of 2015 though?
Yes, I was just 20 when I played 5 Ram Slam T20 matches for the Warriors in 2013 – also as an opener. I remember sharing a room with Ashwell Prince which was quite awe inspiring for me. My first game was my best, actually, and then I had to make way for the returning Colin Ingram. I would like to play more limited overs cricket for the Warriors in the future but I understand its all part of a process and for now I’m just really happy to be contributing at the top of the order in the longer format.
Was it all cricket at school too Eddie?
It was; pretty-much from under 13 right through the age groups and I played in all the Coca Cola and Khaya Majola weeks and then spent two years at the EP Cricket Academy. I was part of NMU’s 1st team and made the SA Universities team two years in a row as well – so I’ve had my fair share of cricket already!
Left handed openers are a special breed, aren’t they.
I’d like to think so which is why I respected Graeme Smith so much when I was growing up and finding my feet in the game. I just admired his presence at the crease and his mental strength and I think as a result, I pride myself in my own fighting spirit. I love toughing it out against the new ball because I know its not a job everyone wants to do. So yes, I don’t only enjoy batting in easy conditions. I find it very rewarding grinding through the difficult periods and then experiencing the satisfaction of going on to make a big hundred. The other two batsmen I really admire are David Warner and the now-retired Mike Hussey.
Talk about mental toughness – there’s a bit of studying going on at the moment too?
Well, I’m in my 4th year of Marketing BTech in Business Management at NMU. Just a few more modules and I’m done – I’m on the home straight but juggling cricket and studying has been very tough. I have to thank my head of department Paul Tai-hing who has helped me with notes and made sure I see the right lecturers. I’ve got mates who also make sure I get the right notes because I miss a lot of classes through cricket. I’ve needed their help and tutoring and am very grateful to everyone that has helped me. My dad also has his own insurance brokerage and he has been instrumental in helping me think about life after cricket and that even now I need to have a Plan B in place.
There are no-doubt a few boxes that still need to be ticked in your cricketing career?
Very much so. Once my studies are completed it really does free me up to do what I want to do. I’d love to experience a bit of cricket overseas and of course I dream of playing Test cricket for the Proteas one day. For now though, I’m just happy to be part of the process and a member of this very special Warriors team. I could feel that hunger to win, even in our pre-season down in Oudtshoorn and I think its showing already. There’s a great vibe within the squad and we’re all happy for each other’s successes even though there is such fierce competition for places in the starting-11. Our Kolpak players Simon Harmer, Colin Ingram and Colin Ackermann will all be returning soon and that’s going to be another headache for the selectors. Either way, I really believe the Warriors are on the cusp of something big this season and its something great to be a part of.