Dane’s dream comes true, but it’s not rugby ...
CAPE TOWN: Dane Paterson had a childhood dream: He wanted to play at Newlands.
There was only one problem. Paterson was referring to the stadium on the other side of the railway line, where his old schoolmate Cheslin Kolbe was running rings around the opposition up until very recently.
Like with many other kids growing up in Cape Town’s northern suburbs rugby is king. And the passion for the oval ball only grew further at Brackenfell High where Paterson was a talented fullback armed with a big boot.
But yet somehow cricket always got in the way. From the moment Paterson was selected for the Western Province Khaya Majola Week U/19 team, it was pretty much a written script. He would get to play at Newlands, every week in fact for the Cape Cobras, and go on to make his Proteas international debut there, but it will always be his second love.
“Yeah, I love my rugby. I always have, always will. I even considered playing in the off-season but there’s always an Emerging Tour, an SA ‘A’ tour or something coming up. The risk of injury is quite high, so I think I’ve finally made peace that it is not going to happen and I need to pack away my boots for good,” Paterson says.
Paterson’s change of heart will certainly be comforting for the Bloem City Blazers, particularly after the Hong Kong-owned team recently forked out $135 000 (approximately R1.8-million) to secure the pace bowler’s signature at the inaugural Global T20 League.
For a player that has shared a Cobras dressing-room for years with Indian Premier League superstars like Kieron Pollard, Hashim Amla, Dale Steyn and JP Duminy without ever being envious of their riches, it is just reward.
Initially Paterson did not want to believe that he had been picked up so early. Playing for South Western Districts in the Africa T20 Cup at Willowmoore Park while the draft was taking place in Cape Town, the four-times capped Protea started hearing murmurs from the sidelines.
“I was on the field while everything was going on, so I didn’t follow it online or anything. It was only when Qaasim Adams (his long-time United Cricket Club and Cobras team-mate) started screaming from the sidelines was I made aware of anything.
“I still didn’t take any notice because I was trying to get through an over. But then Aviwe Mgjima and Jason Smith started shouting from the dressing-room too. I actually told them to stuff off as they were distracting me. It was only after the groundsman told me at the completion of the innings that I believed what had happened!”