Amla can't stop smiling

2007-11-13 00:00

“The first [SuperSport Series] game was the turning point,” Ahmed Amla told The Witness yesterday.

After a disastrous start against the Free State/Griquas Eagles, the Dolphins came within 43 runs of winning. “The guys were not interested in accepting defeat … in the end we came close,” he said.

Thereafter, they posted two victories and are hot on the heels of frontrunners the Eagles. The skipper puts it down to vigorous preparation of both mind and body. “We sat down, decided this was the way we wanted to go and the players put in an unbelievable amount of effort … ,” he said.

Amla is mindful of the youthful nature of the side. “Doug [Watson] is the senior pro and at 27 I'm next, so my job is to keep the team's feet on the ground …. Talented school-leavers like Jonathan Vandiar [DHS], David Miller [Maritzburg College] and Cameron Delport [Westville] are coming to our practices and the whole set-up is extremely healthy … ”

The Dolphins meet the Lions in Potchefstroom from Thursday.

KZN Dolphins: Imraan Khan, Doug Watson, Rivash Gobind, Ahmed Amla (capt), Jon Kent, Wayne Madsen, Jonathan Vandiar, Johann Louw, Liam Plunkett, Daryn Smit, Quinton Friend, Saidi Mlongo.

SS Series log (after three rounds): 1 Free State/Griquas Eagles 42.04 points; 2 KZN Dolphins 39.00 pts; 3 East Cape Warriors 30.28 pts; 4 West Cape Cobras 19.18 pts; 5 North Titans 16.98 pts; 6 Highveld Lions 15.86 pts. * Dolphins deducted two points for slow over rate against Eagles.

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