Knights hope rain stays away
Sarel Cilliers (Gallo Images)
Kimberley - Of all the home comforts to which Knights coach Sarel Cilliers is anticipating in Thursday’s Sunfoil Series match against the Highveld Lions, the lack of persistent rain is probably top of the pile.
The second half of the Knights’ road trip to East London and Pietermaritzburg saw them take the field for just 102 overs in four days and, although the Free State received its first rains this week, the forecast looks fairly clear for the game at Kimberley’s Diamond Oval.
After two drawn matches thus far that is a relief for Cilliers - as is the thought of a venue that generally produces results.
“We’ve seen some good results there in the last couple of years - some that we were on the right side of and some that we were on the wrong side of,” said Cilliers.
“There are opportunities for guys to knuckle down and score the runs and opportunities for guys to take wickets, so if you put your mind to it there is a result to be had.”
After the Lions failed to make their dominance count against the Warriors, coach Geoffrey Toyana also finds the idea appealing and pointed to the scores in last week’s amateur game for encouragement.
Griqualand West won their three-day encounter with Border by one wicket at the Diamond Oval in a game where 201 for nine was the highest score.
“That suggests that the pitch was on the sporty side,” said Toyana.
“We’re going to prepare for all eventualities - if it’s a green top then we’ve got the attack to play there and, if it’s going to be flat, then maybe we’ll play two spinners.”
The Lions will be without Zambian-born seamer Junior Dala, who has been granted compassionate leave, while Thami Tsolekile misses out through injury so Dominic Hendricks will take the gloves.