Lopsy lusting to deliver

2012-11-09 00:00

NEW Dolphins recruit Lonwabo “Lopsy” Tsotsobe is chomping at the bit in anticipation of unleashing his firepower against his former Warriors team-mates in a Momentum One-day Cup day/night clash at Kingsmead today.

Making his debut last Sunday at the Pietermaritzburg Oval against the Cobras, Tsotsobe dusted off the cobwebs and is keen to get on the park and see the Dolphins over the line as they search for their first win of the season.

Said Tsotsobe: “I was a bit rusty on Sunday, but felt I bowled well.

“I picked up two wickets and have been putting in good practice time, indoors and outdoors. The weather has played a massive part in not allowing decent preparation and hopefully today we will be given enough time to play a complete match.

“The team is keen to get on to the field and show what it’s capable of.”

Although the Warriors have lost both their one-day competition games to date — against the Knights and Lions — Tsotsobe is under no illusions when asked if his former team will be easy pickings for the Dolphins.

“Cricket is a game that changes all the time, even when you are playing. The Warriors looked below par against the Lions, but might arrive here, bat first and smash 300. They are an experienced outfit and are capable of putting any team under pressure on their day,” he said.

Having just joined the Dolphins camp, Tsotsobe knows that, as a South African player, he needs to set an example and pave the way for the younger players in the squad. “There is some pressure to perform. As an international player, I must be seen to do things right and with passion and interest. I have chatted and offered advice to some of the bowlers during practice, but when they have the ball in their hands, it’s up to them to decide what they do. It’s a two-way scenario, as I learn from them as well,” he said.

Kingsmead has been a productive ground for Tsotsobe at international and domestic level. “I enjoy playing here and always manage to get something out the pitch.

“It has slowed a bit and has a spongy bounce, but I seem to extract the right ingredients from it and see no reason to fail today,” he said.

Senior middle-order batsman David Miller, fresh from an undefeated 68 last Sunday, is also relishing the opportunity of another hit today.

Said Miller: “I felt good on Sunday, hit the ball well and was happy to get among the runs. It’s the ideal way for me to begin the campaign and there is no doubt I want to continue in the same vein today, especially at Kingsmead. It’s early days in the competition and there is plenty of cricket still to be played, but we desperately want to win. With that first win out the way, it will give us the confidence, as a team, to move forward, knowing what we are capable of.”

After Sunday’s loss, Dolphins coach Lance Klusener and skipper Daryn Smit have focused much of this week on closing out a game and finishing strongly, throttling the opposition when they are down.

With Tsotsobe ready to deliver and Miller among the runs — not forgetting Vaughn van Jaarsveld and Smit, who also made half-centuries against the Cobras — today could be the turning point in the Dolphins’ season. But that’s for the weather to decide.

Today’s match starts at 3 pm and gates open from 2 pm. Tickets are priced from R30.

Dolphins squad: Kyle Abbott, Craig Alexander, Cody Chetty, Cameron Delport, Robbie Frylinck, Imraan Khan,

David Miller, Mthokozisi Shezi, Daryn Smit (Captain), Prenelan Subrayen, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Vaughn van Jaarsveld and Jonathan Vandiar.

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