Knights prepare for resurgent Titans

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iol spt mar4 Loots

Johannesburg – The Knights expect a mighty scrap when they visit the resurgent Titans in Wednesday's RAM SLAM T20 Challenge clash at Supersport Park.

“It's always a tough game against the Titans, wherever you play them, but especially at Centurion,” Knights coach Sarel Cilliers admitted.

“They have some very experienced players, and they also have several game-breakers in their team, which makes it very difficult to play against them. Guys like Albie Morkel and Roelof van der Merwe are capable of swinging the match in a few overs, so we will have to be at our best.”

While Cilliers is wary of the Titans' power, he is also hopeful that his own artillery upfront will also fire. “Our bowlers have done their jobs nicely, but we are probably a bit short of runs at the top of the order. At some stage we are hopeful that Loots Bosman will tee off.

“We are looking to Loots to swing some games for us at the top of the order, as well as Pite van Biljon, who is a really good hitter and has done really well for the Free State provincial side this season in all formats.”

Titans coach Matt Maynard said he was also pleased with the way his bowlers had performed so far.

“Our bowlers have done really well so far, especially Albie Morkel, who has featured in every game so far. But also guys like Ethy Mbhalathi, Alfonso Thomas, Eden Links and Marchant de Lange, as well as Roelof (van der Merwe) - they have all stood up well,” he explained.

“Obviously we want a bit more from our batsmen, but then again, it's maybe better to get them really firing towards the end of the competition, when things get tight.”

Maynard, who has seen his side chalk up back to back wins in the last week of the T20 Challenge, said it was also very important to have the likes of Jacques Rudolph, Morkel, Martin van Jaarsveld and Thomas back in the fray.

“It makes a huge difference, as you can see. It just spreads the responsibility, as well as more ideas on the table. It's really good having them back in the dressing-room.”

While his side are now second on the table, Maynard is wary of just how tight the race for the play-offs is, and expects a tough match against the Knights.

“There are only a couple of points between us and fifth place, so it really is tight up there. The Knights had a really good run against the Lions, and they are a very impressive team. Guys like Johan van der Wath and Nicky Boje are very experienced, and Rilee Rossouw and Dean Elgar have shown that they can take any attack apart,” he warned. – Sapa


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