Dolphins aim to shift mindset

2011-12-07 00:00

AFTER finishing fourth in the One-day Cup, Dolphins vice-captain Daryn Smit said the side is desperate to end the year with their first win in the SuperSport Series.

The Dolphins travel to Bloemfontein to take on the log leaders, Knights, from December 27 to December 30. They come back to Pietermaritzburg to take on the Cobras.

Smit said, “The guys were pretty hurt after putting in a few below-par performances in the One-day Cup.

“There is a lot of pride at stake in the team and we are eager to bounce back.”

In previous SuperSport encounters the Dolphins lost to the Knights at Kingsmead in Durban and drew with the Cobras in Cape Town.

“We have two hard matches ahead of us and then the Warriors in Durban before the Twenty20 tournament in February. It’s going to be a challenging start to the year.”

He said that because of this the squad were given time off to rest and recuperate. This also gives players with injuries time to regain their fitness.

Smit said Ahmed Amla will not be ready by the end of the year as he is still recovering from a torn calf muscle.

However, Loots Bosman, who played in the last three One-day Cup matches, is back to full fitness. Protea players Hashim Amla and Imran Tahir will be on national duty.

The squad’s focus at tomorrow’s pratice will be shifting their mindset back to the longer format of the game, said Smit.

The vice-captain added, “It’s harder to focus your attention back to the longer version of the game after you have just come out of a tournament like the One-day Cup.

“A greater amount of fitness is required, and not just physical fitness: mental fitness is key.

“You have to occupy the crease for extended periods of time and you might have to spend up to two days in the sun before bowling a team out.

“We want to move up as far as we can in the SuperSport Series so wins are crucial.

“We are second last on the log with one more match in the first round of matches to be played. We have a lot to do and can’t lose focus.”

After three wins and a draw, the Knights top the log and are one of two unbeaten teams in the tournament. The Titans are in second spot and the Cobras, the other unbeaten team, are in third spot. The Dolphins are in fifth spot.

•jonathan.faurie@witness.co.za

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