One Day Cup
Lions expect Warriors backlash
Stephen Cook (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - In spite of an excellent start to the One Day Cup, Highveld Lions skipper Stephen Cook is still anticipating a long, hard struggle in this year's 50-over competition.
“We had a great start against the Titans last week, but there is still a lot of cricket to be played. I always knew that the guys were physically prepared to bounce back from the Champions League final, it was just a question of the mental state,” he said ahead of his side's visit to St George's Park in Port Elizabeth on Wednesday.
“But this is a long and tough competition, and we have to focus on playing well against the Warriors, who have always been a tough team to beat, especially at home,” Cook warned.
Cook, who was one of the brightest lights in the Lions' comprehensive 269-run drubbing of the Titans with a classy century, said he was hoping to keep the runs flowing. “I haven’t played as much one-day cricket as I would have liked to over the last few years, but I have put in a lot of hard work recently, and it was nice to see that pay off,” he remarked.
While the Lions have enjoyed a fast start, their hosts, the Warriors, will be looking to bounce back after a 91-run defeat to the Knights in Kimberley on Sunday.
“We definitely let ourselves down in the field against the Knights, and we will be working hard to turn that around,” skipper Davy Jacobs said, after marking his birthday with a poor display.
Over the last few years, the Port Elizabeth franchise has been one of the dominant forces in limited-overs cricket in South Africa, and Jacobs was confident that they would hit their straps again on Wednesday. “We pride ourselves on keeping things simple and that has taken us a long way over the last few seasons. Obviously it wasn’t the best start against the Knights, but we have an opportunity to correct that very soon,” he warned.
Jacobs also said his side couldn’t wait to play in front of its jovial home crowd. “It’s a really special place to play, because the grandstand is so close, and then we also have the band. So, as a team, we always look forward to performing in front of our home crowd and we hope to give them a big performance against the Lions.”
Play at St George's park starts at 15:00 on Wednesday.