Ashwell Prince has played and seen enough first-class cricket to respect the capabilities with the new nut by the VKB Knights express bowlers, Duanne Olivier and Marchant de Lange.
But the Buildnat Cape Cobras’ coach adds two notes which might serve as a timely reminder to the Knights and as a vote of confidence in his own lower order: “Duanne has taken 52 wickets and Marchant 34 in the Sunfoil Series. But in the Momentum One Day Cup competition they cannot bowl all the overs.
“And we not only possess a good top order. I don’t see the need to move Jason Smith up the order. He only requires a few balls to do damage (at number five). He struck a century off 88 balls against the same opposition in the Sunfoil Series. In limited-overs cricket, Dane Vilas has been superb (at number six, averaging a phenomenal 141 in the previous season),” Prince said.
And the coach is aware of the fact that Aviwe Mgijima struck five half-centuries in the Sunfoil Series, while Rory Kleinveldt is a man who can smash half-centuries off twenty balls, or play sensibly and share in century stands.
“Our balance is an advantage. We bat deep and we possess quite a few options. In dry conditions, Mgijima and Stiaan van Zyl could bowl quite a few effective overs each.
“Stiaan can also speed up the game with the bat (at number three),” said Prince.
The coach says the team is aware that all six franchises commence at zero and that the Buildnat Cape Cobras consequently don’t have to play catch-up cricket.
Their campaign starts at the Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein at 14:00 on Saturday.
Judging by the way the Cobras have performed the past four seasons (reaching the final in all four series), they will be a tough team to beat.
And they have an added incentive to win a Momentum One Day Cup title after stumbling over the final hurdle the previous two seasons.
The Buildnat Cape Cobras squad is:
Dane PIEDT (Captain)
Stiaan VAN ZYL
Dane VILAS (W/Keeper)