The trip of the SWD cricket team to Namibia this weekend will be a memorable one for their experienced middle order batsman, Adrian McLaren. The 33 year old will play his 100th first class match.
After spending his entire cricket career in Kimberly, the McLaren decided to cut ties with the diamond City and moved to the SWD at the beginning of the 2012/13season. He is a member of the well-known McLaren cricket family from Kimberley. Both his father – Keith and Uncle, Paul, played for Griquas for many years whilst his cousin, Ryan, represented South Africa at the highest level. He attended schools at Kimberley Boys High School and represented the Griquas Schools team from 1996-1998. He was also a regular member in the central professional franchise team (first known as the Diamond Eagles and later as the Knights) where he excelled in the limited overs format.
McLaren, who made his debut for Griquas 15 years ago (1998/99 season) at the age of 18 has scored 6,169 first class runs – including 21 centuries with a highest score of 212* which he scored last season for SWD against KwaZula Natal in Oudtshoorn. McLaren, who also occasionally keep wicket, took 181 catches.
He is also approaching his 100th limited over and 50th T20 match this season. He already played 95 limited over matches with a highest 165 which he made against Border in the 2011/12 season and played 45 T20 matches with a highest score of 78*.
Over a period of fourteen seasons he played against the best players in South Africa but he regarded the Protea spin bowler, Claude Henderson, Australia’s Brett Lee (which he faced in the Champions League) and the West Indian pace bowler, Nixon McLean as the best bowlers he faced. McLaren, who also played provincial hockey for Griquas, rates the former Protea coach, Corrie van Zyl, who coached him at the Eagles as the best coach he played under.