About the Match
The Knights and the Warriors will lock horns when they meet for the Momentum Cup Qualifier at Bloemfontein on 26th March. Titans have booked a home final in this month-long tournament and are waiting to know which team will be their opponent in the title clash; both Knights and Warriors have done well this season and will put up a tough fight to keep their campaign alive here. It needs to be seen which team can overcome the crunch situations and emerge victorious on Sunday.
The Knights defeated Dolphins recently by chasing down 205 runs thanks to sturdy innings by PJ van Biljon and Swanepoel, who scored 40+ runs each. Second and Bodibe posted a 61-run opening stand while others down the line helped keep the scoreboard ticking to win the match by 1 wicket. Earlier, medium-pacer Dillon du Preez took 4-31 while speedsters Schalkwyk and Mofokeng took 2 wickets each, contributing well to restrict Dolphins at 204. Fast-bowler Merchant de Lange and spinner Swanepoel claimed a wicket each and they add depth to the attack.
When they met Warriors earlier during the league, Knights had failed to chase down 285 runs despite a superb 84 off 104 by Biljon and an unbeaten 76 by Swanepoel. The others tried their best to pile up the runs but players like Second, Petersen, Leus du Plooy and Miller couldn’t impress with the bat and they lost the match by 6 runs.
Overall, they have a strong bowling attack with a fine mix of spinners and pacemen; the batting line-up has also exhibited resolve to set good targets or chase one convincingly. They will be eagerly waiting to seek redemption against Warriors for their earlier loss and make it to the finals here.
Warriors defeated Lions by 36 runs D/L method in the recent outing after restricting them to 154 and then going on to chase down the reduced target of 88 runs from 32 overs successfully. Openers Smuts and Cloete put up a tremendous effort by posting 93 runs while others kept the runs flowing and won the match easily. Earlier, spinner and all-rounder batsman Smuts took 4-25 to restrict the opponents to a low total; spinner Ingram and speedster Magala also took 2 wickets apiece and got the Lions all-out in less than 44 overs.
Smuts had led from the front in the previous match against Knights as well, posting a heroic 132 off 144; Colin Ackermann supported well with a commendable 86 off 96 to take the total to 284 runs. Fast-bowler Andrew Birch then dismissed 3 opponents in an economical way while Magala and Ackermann claimed 2 wickets each to stifle Knights at 278 runs and win the match.
Their batting performance has been in-form and they have a good bowling attack that can stun the Knights yet again on Sunday.
Knights and Warriors are both strong teams that have a good number of match-winners on their side; the contest could be evenly fought and may turn out to be a thriller but we feel that Warriors with their all-around performance with bat and ball are better placed to make it through with a win.