About the Match
Knights had won against Warriors in the opening match of the series but since then, they haven’t scored another win; now the two teams will meet again on 24th November at Bloemfontein to better their standings with a victory. While Knights have 6 points and are placed in the 4th spot, Warriors have zero points and are at the bottom of the table. Both teams can try to put their best foot forward here, and whichever side keeps a cool head above its shoulders under crunch situations will be better placed to emerge victoriously.
Against Warriors previously, the bowlers did a commendable job of restricting the opponents to 153; medium-pacer Shadley van Schalkwyk claimed 3-25 while spinner Eddie Leie and pacer Merchant de Lange took 2 wickets apiece to stifle the Warriors. Aubrey Swanepoel also removed one batsman and then the batting line-up achieved the target with 2 overs to spare. Captain Theunis de Bruyn led from the front, scoring 78 from just 48 deliveries while David Miller posted a brilliant 62 off 47.
While chasing a target of 200 against Titans, however, the batting line-up collapsed like a pack of cards, and they lost the match by 38 runs. Andries Gous, the wicket-keeper batsman, top-scored with 37 runs while Theunis de Bruyn, Grant Mokoena, and Marchant de Lange made useful contributions. However, they could muster only 161 in reply. Earlier, the bowlers proved to be expensive and despite Schalkwyk, Swanepoel and Merchant de Lange taking a wicket each, they couldn’t stop the hard-hitting Titans from scoring the big runs.
They have had a mixed run so far and will try to dominate the Warriors again to move ahead on the table before it gets too late.
They haven’t done well either with the bat or the ball and would be eager to make amends in the upcoming match. Against Titans, the batting line-up failed to chase down 173 after a string of duck-outs in the top-order. While Gihahn Cloete scored 32 and JJ Smuts posted 20 runs, the others down the line fell quickly and couldn’t steady the innings. Andrew Birch and Sisanda Magala tried to revive the innings by scoring 24 and 19 runs respectively, but they lost the match by a massive 61 runs.
Speedsters like Sisanda Magala, BD Walters, Kelly Smuts and Solo Nqweni took a wicket each against Titans but the others gave away too many easy runs. Against Knights too, they couldn’t strategize well to defend 153 runs set by the batsmen. Christiaan Jonker had top-scored in that match with a well-made 61 but others like Colin Ingram, Colin Ackermann, and JJ Smuts failed to impress.
The Warriors have experienced players in both departments of the game; however, they need to pull up their socks and give a better all-around performance if they want to win here.
The Knights have the psychological advantage of having won previously against the Warriors, and this could give them the edge on Friday. Although Warriors have quite many established players, the Knights are in better form with bat and ball, to win again.