Titans coach Boucher to unleash Proteas on Jukskei derby
Titans coach Mark Boucher will unleash his Proteas superstars in their opening Ram Slam T20 Challenge against rivals Highveld Lions in the second match of the double-header offering at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Sunday afternoon.
The defending champions have an embarrassment of riches in their squad with the likes of AB de Villiers‚ Faf du Plessis‚ Quinton de Kock‚ Aiden Markram‚ Dean Elgar‚ Chris Morris‚ Farhaan Behardien‚ Morne Morkel‚ Dale Steyn and Tabraiz Shamsi set to play a part this season.
“It’s great that they are playing and it will really enhance the competition. But T20 is always going to be tight because of the fact that one or two players can win you games‚” said Boucher as he looked ahead to the usually competitive Jukskei derby.
“So we just have to cover all the bases and hopefully a couple of games go our way early on.
“That will help us to try and get into a position to challenge for the finals. If we can do that‚ we’ll give ourselves a chance to continue winning trophies.”
Lions coach Geoffrey Toyana is expecting a tough first match in this competition for his side‚ who lost to the Titans in the Sunfoil Series.
“It’s been a fairly good season so far despite that loss in the four day competition. We now play the Titans again first up in the T20 competition‚” Toyana said.
“It’s a derby‚ at their home ground with all those big players in the mix‚ so it will be a tough one.”
Lions fast bowler Kagiso “KG” Rabada will be looking to get the better of his Proteas teammates in the Titans.
In the first match of the double-header the Cape Cobras take on the Dolphins‚ where there will also be an array of Proteas stars on show.
Cobras coach Ashwell Prince expects the availability of Proteas players in this competition to significantly bolster the strength of the competition. He can call upon Hashim Amla‚ Temba Bavuma‚ Dane Paterson‚ JP Duminy‚ Vernon Philander and Wayne Parnell.
“It’s going to be exciting with all the international players being available to play. It will make the teams and the competition stronger‚” Prince said.
“And just like the four-day Sunfoil Series‚ I don’t think there’ll be any easy games‚ so it’s going to be exciting and we look forward to it.
Dolphins coach Grant Morgan has been bolstered by the availability of Imran Tahir‚ Andile Phehlukwayo and Keshav Maharaj.
“Last year we did okay‚ we could have made the playoffs going into the last week even though we had a slightly messy campaign‚” Morgan said.
“We are always competitive and you’ll find that even games we lose‚ we always have good performances that come out from it.
“We’d like to think that our T20 campaign was the most disappointing of all last year‚ although we do line up nicely as a Twenty20 side. So we are all looking forward to it.”
Cape Cobras v Dolphins (SuperSport Park‚ Centurion‚ 12pm)
Titans v Highveld Lions (SuperSport Park‚ Centurion‚ 4pm)
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