One Day Cup

Cobras aim to break Dolphins grip

2018-01-30 17:45
Ashwell Prince (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - The Cape Cobras will be aiming to end the stranglehold the Dolphins have held over them this season when they meet in the second One-Day Cup semi-final at Newlands in Cape Town on Wednesday.

The hosts have not beaten the visitors in white-ball cricket this term, losing both previous encounters in the league phase of the current competition.

They also met thrice in the RAM SLAM T20 Challenge, with the Durbanites winning one of those and the other two decided by rain. One of the weather-hit games was also a semi-final with the no result leading to the Dolphins reaching the final by virtue of ending above the Cobras on the final log standings.

There will be no such repeat this time, though. The Cape side finished above the Dolphins on the table. The Titans and the Warriors ended first and fourth and one of the two will complete the line-up for Friday's final.

Despite their history, home coach Ashwell Prince believes that only good cricket will get his side through as they aim to finally get one over the KwaZulu-Natal side.

"We've done all our preparations for the game and we're as ready as we can be," Prince said. "The Dolphins are a good team with some really experienced players in their line-up, so we've just got to make sure we pick some holes in their line-up.

“We need to find those weaknesses and make sure we expose them."

The Cobras do have one other problem to contend with going into the game - the loss of their captain JP Duminy to the Proteas for the upcoming One-Day International series against India.

Although the Dolphins too are without their skipper Khaya Zondo for the same reason, the absence of Duminy can be considered even bigger considering his form this season.

"JP's been very influential for us on all three fronts, with bat, with ball and with the captaincy, so it is a massive blow for us," Prince added. "But we have to get on with it.

"The Dolphins are also losing their captain and players to the national team, so it's the same for everybody really."

Dolphins coach Grant Morgan does not feel their recent dominance over the Cobras will make any difference come Wednesday.

"We're very respectful of them and we know they are one fantastic side," he said. "Yes, we have had it over them in games this season, but they were all tight contests. But those are in the past now and it's down to a one-off affair.

"We know what they will bring, they have an excellent attack and we'll have to be wary and can take nothing for granted."

With Duminy and Zondo missing, both teams will have new leaders - and different ones too - in Rory Kleinveldt and Keshav Maharaj, who is back from national duty for the visitors.

Squads:

Cobras

Rory Kleinveldt (capt), Dayyaan Galiem, Zubayr Hamza, Simon Khomari, George Linde, Pieter Malan, Aviwe Mgijima, Tshepo Moreki, Mthiwekhaya Nabe, Dane Piedt, Dane Paterson, Vernon Philander, Jason Smith, Kyle Verreynne.

Dolphins

Kehsav Maharaj (capt), Sarel Erwee, Senuran Muthusamy, Sibonelo Makhanya, Calvin Savage, Robert Frylinck, Athi Maposa, Zack Paruk, Prenelan Subrayen, Morne van Wyk, Dane Vilas, Smangaliso Nhlebela, Mthokozisi Shezi, Vaughn van Jaarsveld.

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