Do-or-die clash for Dolphins vs Eagles

2010-02-10 00:00

The KZN Dolphins know very well that tonight’s Standard Bank Pro20 Series clash with the Free State Eagles represents a final fling at staying in the hunt for the trophy.

Barring another bizarre set of results, such as the manner of their passage to the MTN40 play-offs, the Durban outfit simply have to get over the line tonight.

Short of form and lacking in confidence, they will look to their experienced pros to inspire them against an Eagles side also struggling through the competition.

It promises to be tense, but the Dolphins must surely be hoping that Loots Bosman’s juices are positively pumping at the thought of squaring up against former colleagues.

Bosman, who has rather ironically enjoyed better form in the SuperSport Series than the shorter formats, leaves on Saturday to link up with the Proteas in India.

Quite why he has to spend a week watching Test matches when he could, at the least, have played in Sunday’s game is hard to fathom, but the powers-that-be have seen fit for the rest of the ODI specialists to spend a week in India masquerading as cheerleaders.

Bosman’s form in recent weeks has been a great source of frustration, but the slugger told The Witness that he is hoping to leave his mark before jumping on the plane.

“It’s been a tough few weeks, but I am really keen to spend some time in the middle,” the man his team-mates call “Bazooka” said after yesterday’s net session.

The Dolphins will monitor the well-being of their other slugger, young David Miller, who had a mild case of sunstroke after Sunday’s exertions against the Warriors.

Miller sat out the team practice, but was quietly confident of taking his spot in the field this evening. His prowess with the long handle will come in handy against the Eagles’ duo of twirlers, Thandi Tshabalala and Con de Lange.

The Dolphins’ own slow option, Keshav Maharaj, was given a tough baptism of fire by Colin Ingram at the weekend, and it seems that he will be wrapped in cotton-wool for more sedate encounters in the future.

Alfonso Thomas looks set to reclaim his spot and the Dolphins’ extended workout in the field yesterday suggests that coach Graham Ford was not best pleased with Sunday’s shambles.

TV: SuperSport2 from 5.45 pm.

TEAMS: DOLPHINS: Imraan Khan (c), Loots Bosman, Ahmed Amla, Dale Benkenstein, David Miller, Andrew Hall, Daryn Smit, Johann Louw, Quinton Friend, Alfonso Thomas, Pierre de Bruyn, Khaya Zondo and Ruan Pietersen. EAGLES: Morne van Wyk, Adrian McLaren, Rilee Rossouw, Ryan Bailey, Boeta Dippenaar, Con de Lange, Reeza Hendricks, Allan Kruger, Dillon Du Preez, Jandre Coetzee, Schadley van Schalkwyk, Victor Mpitsang.

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