Rested Dolphins revved up

2011-11-03 00:00

AFTER a week’s rest from the SuperSport Series, as the Warriors played catch-up after missing early matches because of the Nokia Champions League, the Dolphins are well rested and rearing to go in the One Day Cup.

The Dolphins’ first match is against the Cobras at Kingsmead tomorrow, with a meeting against the Warriors scheduled for The Pietermaritzburg Oval on Sunday.

Dolphins vice captain Daryn Smit reports that the break came at an opportune time as it afforded the team an opportunity to put the disappointing start to the season behind them in order to focus on matters at hand.

Smit said, “The team has really been working hard to put past results behind us. And that is important, obviously there is nothing that we can do now about the way we have started the season, we can only look ahead. Positives we can take out of the way we have played thus far have been that we have played good cricket in stages, all we need is to build on that.”

This then is pointing towards the feeling that the Dolphins will be more competitive in the shorter formats of the game.

“Limited over cricket is by nature an unpredictable game.

“The time that you have to dominate your opponent is shorter than in the SuperSport Series and there is an element of luck involved.

“Plus we have a lot of limited over specialists in the team,” said Smit.

Players like Loots Bosman, Cameron Delport and the returning David Miller are all assets that the Dolphins’ brains trust can call upon, and smart money is that they will start tomorrow.

Traditionally, the Dolphins have been one of the top teams in the limited over version of the game and Smit said that key to this success is building the team around the talent at their disposal.

“We all know what Bosman, Delport and Miller can do once they get going. So the key is for the rest of the batsmen to bat well around them. And with proven wicket takers like Friedel de Wet and Kyle Abbott in the team, we can push for top honours, particularly in the Twenty20 competition,” said Smit.

And it was Abbott’s — affectionately known as Jimmy — form in the MTN 40 and Standard Bank Pro20 tournaments last year which saw him being selected to the South African A squad last year.

What’s worthwhile to note is that these players will all be looking to prove a point before the arrival of international heavyweights Sean Tait and Chris Gayle, who are due to play for the Dolphins in the upcoming Twenty20 tournament.

“I suppose guys like Bosman and Delport will want to prove a point before Gayle arrives as will Abbott and De Wet before Tait arrives.

“But the guys are professionals and will not lose focus on the teams objectives while striving towards personal goals,” said Smit.

Depending on the elements, the Cobra’s game is due to start at 3 pm tomorrow with a 10 am start on Sunday at The Oval.

“The team is really excited about being back at our second home on Sunday. Although you can’t fit as many people in The Oval as you can at Kingsmead, when The Oval fills up … the atmosphere is electric. It’s really enjoyable for the guys,” he said. He urged all to come and support the team on Sunday.

Tickets for the Warriors game are R30 for adults and R15 for scholars. Ticket can be purchased from the KZN Inland Cricket Union office (033 345 2791), Goga’s Pharmacy (033 391 0372), Bhamjee’s Sports (033 342 2025), Poobie Naidoo Sports (033 345 3921) and Jackson Sports (033 342 2445).

In closing, Smit lent his weight to the recent ball tampering allegations which were levelled against the Knights.

“Obviously I can’t say whether they were guilty or not because I was here in Durban while the match took place in Kimberly.

“But the Knights have always been known to get the ball to reverse swing well and early on in the match. Now there are only certain ways to do this.

“But the fact that Cricket South Africa found them not guilty and considers the matter closed says it all.

“We have got the ball to reverse swing well this season as have the Cobras so I don’t think the Knights are guilty of any untoward behaviour,” said Smit.


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