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|Shaun von Berg||1.0||0||13||0||13.00|
|Shaun von Berg||3||11||0||0||27.27|
|Tony de Zorzi||4||6||0||0||66.67|
|AB de Villiers||59||30||3||5||196.67|
After years of planning, a huge public misstep, and lots of concern about the viability of a T20 competition in South Africa, the Mzansi Super League is about to get underway. There is plenty of excitement among cricket watchers around the world and South Africans players as well. If the league is able to achieve some sustained level of success then it could provide South African cricket a real boost.
The South African Cricket Board officials have stated the objective of this tournament to spread the game in every corner of the community while improving the financial health of the game as well.
Most importantly, though, it needs to throw up cricket of the highest quality to attract eyeballs.
The first game of the Mzansi Super League is going to be played between the Cape Town Blitz and the Tshwane Spartans.
The Cape Town Blitz squad suffered a big blow when they lost the services of JP Duminy, one of their marquee players. Duminy has been replaced by Quinton de Kock, though, and he is going to be one of the key batsmen for the Blitz in this competition.
For this match, however, Cape Town Blitz will not have the services of Quinton de Kock and of a couple of more of their leading players away on national duty. South Africa’s tour to Australia ends with a one-off T20 international that will prevent de Kock, Farhaan Behardien, Dale Steyn, and Andile Phehlukwayo from playing in the opening fixture of the Mzansi Super League.
Losing four players of this quality is going to have an effect on any side and the Cape Town Blitz is no different. They will be hoping that their international picks are able to take up the slack and ensure that they remain competitive.
Dawid Malan, Samuel Badree, and Asif Ali should be available for this match and be able to play a significant role.
Malan is an underrated T20 player that seems to have got lost in the plethora of big hitters that England seems to be producing. Malan, though, had a very good start to his international career and will definitely see this tournament as an opportunity to get back into the limelight.
Samuel Badree was at the top of the T20 bowling charts for a very long time. He is a veteran T20 player having played for the West Indies and in multiple leagues around the world for quite a few years now. He usually takes the new ball and is able to keep a tight leash on the batsmen during the powerplay.
Asif Ali will get a chance to show his skills in this tournament after making a splash for Pakistan already. A big hitter of the ball, Asif Ali needs to work on getting a bit more consistent because he definitely has the power to clear the boundaries.
Among the local South African players George Linde, a left-handed batsman, and Ferisco Adams, a right-handed batsman who can bowl as well are the players to watch out for.
Dawid Malan, Janneman Malan, JF Smith, Mohammad Nawaz, Kyle Verreynne, Sibonelo Makhanya, Ferisco Adams, George Linde, Dane Piedt, MP Siboto, Anrich Nortje.
Like the Cape Town Blitz, the Tshwane Spartans will also be missing a few of their big players but their biggest player, AB de Villiers is going to be available and looking forward to the action.
AB de Villiers is not only the biggest draw of this tournament, he remains one of the biggest draws in any tournament that he competes in. He announced his retirement from international cricket 6 months ago and has since been out of action.
This tournament will be the first time that he returns to the field and we have no doubt that his legions of fans will tune in to see how he is doing. We think he is going to dominate this competition like he has a few other South African domestic tournaments in the past. He was considered the best batsman in the world when he stepped away from international cricket and there is no reason why he will anything less than brilliant here as well.
The Tshwane Spartans also have some renowned names like Dean Elgar, Theunis de Bruyn, Rory Kleinveldt, and Robbie Frylinck in the squad. This provides them with a strong base of South African cricketers with the international cricketers to help fill in any gaps that might be there.
The side should have the services of Eoin Morgan and Jeevan Mendis for this match after which their Zimbabwe international players will join the squad as well.
Lunge Ngidi, who is a part of the squad currently in Australia, will be the biggest name missing from the Tshwane Spartans side.
The Tshwane Spartans have a good batting side but the bowling looks a little short on experience. Rory Kleinvedlt is going to be the one bowler to possibly lead this attack and help guide the youngsters.
Robbi Frlyinck has been on the cusp of South African selection for a long time now. He is a powerful hitter of the ball and a useful bowler. He is the one domestic player we would watch out for.
AB de Villiers, Gihahn Cloete, Tony de Zorzi, Dean Elgar, Robbie Frylinck, Rilee Rossouw, Shaun von Berg, BMAJ Mendis, Rory Kleinveldt, Lutho Sipamla, Andrew Birch.
The side winning the toss is likely to field first
Read our guide on toss predictions to learn how we analyze and come up with our tips.
The match is being played in Newlands, Cape Town, which is the hometown for the Cape Town Blitz. We expect an excellent batting surface to start off the tournament with some nice pace and carry. The batsmen will be able to hit through the line without any trouble while the fast bowlers should get some reward for bending their backs as well.
A clear day with high humidity has been forecast for match day. A score of around 180 should be considered par.
The Tshwane Spartans have the large majority of their first choice players available. They also have AB de Villiers on their side and that is something no one is going to be able to ignore. We think they should be able to start the tournament on a winning note.
Back the Tshwane Spartans to win.
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