Dolphins back their youngsters

2010-03-17 00:00

THE KZN Dolphins have shown their hand for their final SuperSport Series matches, and the indications are that Graham Ford will stick to his guns and back the youngsters.

Tomorrow’s clash in Cape Town against the Cobras will feature three debutants, and two of them are from the KZN Inland set-up.

Kimeshin Chetty, the fast-medium bowler, and top-order batsman Bradley Moses have been rewarded for their consistency this season, and they are joined in receiving their first franchise caps by left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj.

When you throw in the likes of Khaya Zondo, Bradley Barnes and Mthokozisi Shezi, the Dolphins are proving true to their word of backing the promising, home-grown youngsters over expensive imports.

One of the chief benefactors of this new thinking is Moses, who has chiselled together a strong season with the Inland side.

In the main, he has matured as a player, especially since the turn of the year. Some of the flamboyance of youth has been replaced by the serenity that comes with experience, and he is positively bouncing at the prospect of his big day at Newlands.

“I was over the moon when I was told I was playing,” the 26-year old Moses told The Witness last night.

“It’s something that I have been striving towards for years,” the UKZN student added.

Moses’s season on the first class circuit includes a century against Easterns and a fair sprinkling of fighting half-centuries.

“Since the start of the season I have tried to put a bigger price on my wicket,” he explained.

Though that has meant he has relinquished some of the cavalier strokeplay of youth, his more conservative approach has given the side stability at the top of the order.

Moses paid tribute to the various coaches who have honed his undoubted skills over the course of the season, especially Ford, Richard Pybus and Inland head coach Doug Watson.

“I’ve had countless throwdowns, but you can see the results on the field,” he reflected.

His last outing in Namibia saw him just miss out on a second first-class ton, a statistic that is not lost on the stylish right-hander.

“As a batsman, you are judged on the number of hundreds you chalk up, so I was very disappointed not to get over the line in Namibia.

“I have made a few fifties this season, but the coaches have been in my ear telling me that to succeed at the next level, you have to convert,” he added.

Certainly, Ford has been quietly impressed with Moses — and a number of other Inland prospects.

“He is a definite talent, and he has earned his chance. The challenge now is for him and the other new guys to show that they belong, and hopefully he can do that,” the Dolphins minder said after yesterday’s session at Kingsmead.

Missing the injured Hashim Amla and the rested Loots Bosman, the Dolphins are sending the proverbial crèche to Cape Town.

But there is only one way to learn, and that is out in the middle.

Dolphins team: Imraan Khan (c), Bradley Barnes, Ahmed Amla, David Miller, Khaya Zondo, Bradley Moses, Daryn Smit, Jon Kent, Quinton Friend, Kimeshin Chetty, Keshav Maharaj, Michael Alexander (12th man).

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