Rory Kleinveldt is arguably one of the most underrated batsmen in South African one-day cricket.
Observers refer to him as a so-called dangerous player, which, if you read the sub-text, means that he can produce havoc on the odd occasion.
But Kleinveldt is a better lower-order batsman than that. In the previous Royal London One Day Cup, he averaged 95 with the blade and smashed 285 runs at a strike-rate of slightly above 160. That shows that he can regularly destroy opposing teams.
In his previous match for the Buildnat Cape Cobras, against the Hollywoodbet Dolphins, Kleinveldt hammered 26 off 15 balls to power the visitors to a three-wicket win with four balls to spare.
The bizhub Highveld Lions might just be painfully aware of his all-round prowess when the two teams clash at Boland Park in Paarl on Friday at 14:00 in a Momentum One Day Cup match.
“I won’t say my arc of attacking strokes has improved,” Kleinveldt said.
“It is about knowing when to hit and how. Earlier (in my career) I tended to approach the batting gung-ho, but that has changed.
“For example, in the previous match, Dane (Vilas) and I knew that we needed to bat deep and that we could easily close it out by scoring 15 runs in the last over,” he said.
Kleinveldt also captured 4-48, his best one-day performance of the season.
But he selflessly give credit to Stiaan van Zyl, Aviwe Mgijima and Dane Piedt, who controlled the middle period with very economic bowling and built pressure superbly.
“So I had to keep the ball in the right areas and I reversed it a bit and got the rewards. But because the pressure was there, I got the rewards,” he said.
Kleinveldt says Lizaad Williams is a very good bowler who has only played occasionally because there have been many South African bowlers in the set-up like Wayne Parnell, he and Dane Paterson. Consequently, he has missed out, but currently, he is performing well.
“We just need our third bowler to hit the hot zones more consistently,” he added.
The position of the third seam bowler is arguably one of the Buildnat Cape Cobras’ greatest challenges, but Van Zyl and Mgijima were excellent as batting all-rounders, keeping the scoreboard static and the frustrated batsmen of the Dolphins rooted in their crease.
More performances like that by Van Zyl and Mgijima could just aid the in-form Kleinveldt to produce the knock-out blow with the ball.
His recent history indicates he is capable of doing just that. He nabbed a memorable 5-45 in the Sunfoil Series against the Multiply Titans in the second half of the season to underline his credentials as a fast bowler with sensational abilities.