Cape Town - A moment of madness or half-an-hour of complacency
could deny the Titans a place in the knock-out stages of the One Day Cup, especially if their bowling attack allows the belligerent Richard
Levi to get into his stride at Boland Park in Paarl on Wednesday.
A brief glance at the scorecard in a recent match at this
picturesque ground reveals that Levi and Andrew Puttick needed just 10.5 overs
of ferocious hitting to propel the hosts to a 10-wicket win against the
And the Titans cannot afford any errors. The visitors
have 21 points after nine matches. If the hosts win, and the Knights
and the Dolphins coast to victory against the Highveld Lions and
the Warriors, the Titans’ campaign will end with a whimper and
they will be knocked out of the competition.
“One of the things that is true about the Titans is
that, if we have a clear picture what we need to do to win a competition, we
perform at the best of our ability,” said Matthew Maynard, the Titans'
Justin Ontong, the Cape Cobras' captain, still
believes that the hosts are capable of replacing the log leaders, the Highveld Lions, at the summit of the table if the latter slip against the
Knights in Kimberley and the Cobras win with a bonus point against
One of the key players for the Cape Cobras in
the bonus-point win against the Knights in Paarl, Justin Kemp, is
battling with a hamstring niggle and management hopes he will be fit for this
“One of the keys to our improved performances is that our
top- and middle-order have improved in establishing significant partnerships.
Richard (Levi), Dane Villas and Stiaan van Zyl have been some of our stand-out
“Our bowling attack has also increased our strike-rate in
the first power play, especially since we entrusted the new ball to our
experienced duo of Johann Louw and Charl Langeveldt,” said Ontong.
The Titans have excelled as a batting unit in the One Day Cup, but their bowling attack has been exposed on occasions.
A minor injury crisis have contributed to their woes, as
Paul Harris (broken finger) and Ethy Mbahlati (grade 2 hamstring-tear) have
been ruled out for the second half of the campaign.
“JP de Villiers did well for us in his first and most recent
game. Eden Links performed admirably against the Dolphins.
“Roelof van der Merwe is also back to his very best. He has
the attitude to succeed at the highest level,” said Maynard.
The performance by the Titans spinners and the state
of the pitch might decide the outcome of the game on Wednesday.
But Ontong is clear that, if the Cobras
want to replace the bizhub Lions as the No 1 team on the log,
they will have to use the first power-play to rattle the strong Titans
The match starts at 15:00 on Wednesday.
Cape Cobras: Justin Ontong (captain), Richard Levi, Andrew Puttick, Stiaan van Zyl,
Mohammad Vallie, Justin Kemp, Dane Villas, Alastair Gray, Johann Louw, Lizaad
Williams, Charl Langeveldt.
Titans: Martin van Jaarsveld (captain), Heino Kuhn,
Henry Davids, Mangaliso Mosehle, Farhaan Behardien, Albie Morkel, David
Wiese, Roelof van der Merwe, Eden Links,
JP de Villiers, Rowan Richards, Shaun von Berg, CJ de Villiers.