There will be no Stiaan van Zyl or Andrew Puttick in the slip cordon this four-day season, which means a completely new first, second and third slip in Aviwe Mgijima, Janneman Malan and Zubayr Hamza, but nevertheless the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras expect to improve on last season by displaying a better attitude in the field. This was the view of Ashwell Prince, head coach of the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras.

Puttick retired at the end of last season. Van Zyl was one of the best four-day batsmen on display for the Cape Cobras last season, but a knee injury will keep him on the sidelines until the end of January

He has been forced to watch his County side Sussex from the sidelines since the start of June and his progress will only be reassessed at the end of January. Van Zyl is not a fully contracted player for the Cape Cobras this season.

Prince, in speaking about the fielding – which has been described by Justin Ontong as in decline generally amongst all the franchises – said the Cape side have done enough fielding drills before the season starts and expect it to be better.

They field a very young team with Rory Kleinveldt being one of the few senior statesmen in the side.

But the fielding in South Africa has not slipped to a lower level due to a lack of intent by the franchises, according to Prince.

“Herschelle Gibbs and Ontong were playing in an era where there was general brilliance in the field.

“The fielding now is poorer because of a wrong attitude. The players don’t realise that in one moment of brilliance, you can remove the batsman who is controlling the game and possibly change the outcome of the game. It is because many players see fielding as a chore.

“What is needed is a change of attitude that you must want to make a difference in the field. If you go home and you have not given it your best effort, you have let your team down.

“Through good fielding you can lift the spirit in the field and lift the spirits of the bowlers,” said Prince.

The World Sports Betting Cape Cobras get their 4-Day Franchise Series season underway on Monday, 1 October when they take on the VKB Knights at PPC Newlands.