Cape Town - Dolphins coach Grant Morgan believes their unpredictability
this season makes them a thorny side for any opposition ahead of their One-Day Cup semi-final against the Warriors in Durban on Thursday.
The KwaZulu-Natal side won five matches during the regular
season - one each against the other five teams - to finish second on the log
standings and earn the right of staging a Kingsmead play-off.
The last win over their Eastern Cape opponents was a
thumping nine-wicket bonus-point triumph and Morgan feels they can take plenty
of heart from that in what is a match-up of the two sides that jointly hold the
"What we have is unpredictability, which is not necessarily
a good thing, but in this instance it may work in our favour," he said. "It
makes us a thorny side because we have beaten everyone.
"People know that on our day we can beat anyone, hopefully
it will be our day on Thursday and we are able to progress."
Morgan's charges have reached play-offs in each of his
seasons in charge and they are now bidding for yet another one. The Dolphins
boss believes that all the signs were there showing his team had the capacity
to get to the decider against either the Titans or Cape Cobras on Sunday.
"If you look at our previous two campaigns since I've been
here, our course was pretty similar," he explained. "And we've addressed those
issues where our form had somewhat tapered off following a good start to the
"Yet, there's an argument that in both seasons we qualified
for the play-offs relatively comfortably where we've made some mistakes and
still got there.
"We've definitely faced our challenges and we've addressed
those, but still struggled to find our B plus game, perhaps we did it once
against the Warriors. We've still learnt a lot along the way."
Of the Dolphins' five wins this term, only one was at
Durban, where they also lost twice. It is a venue that they somehow have not
managed to dominate, but Morgan feels this was a chance to alter the script.
"We've struggled at home a lot over the years and
I think this is kind of a chance to make things right against a side that has
been quite a challenge for us. We've now beaten them at their home and it's now
time to put the record straight at home," he said.
Meanwhile, Warriors coach Rivash Gobind believes his side
are ready for the play-offs. The Eastern Cape franchise have punched above
their weight for most of the last few seasons, but now appear to be coming of
age thanks to the growing maturity of some of their young players.
"Our goal has always been to get into the knockout stages
and now that we're here, we need to make sure we put in a performance that does
justice to how we’ve played throughout the competition," the coach said.
"I think over the course of the 10 games, we only really had
two bad days. We've been otherwise very competitive right through.
"It was great to get some momentum in the last game when we
beat the Cobras. I think we're in a pretty good space now."
The Dolphins look set to welcome back Andile Phehlukwayo
from national duty, while the Warriors' new Proteas in Lutho
Sipamla and Sinethemba Qeshile are also available again.
"A guy like Andile coming makes make them really strong
again," Gobind warned. "He was one of the reasons they were so successful at
the start and will be a big plus.
"We also have some of our players back in Sipamla and
Qeshile, they have been exceptional for us as well, so all in all, I'm
expecting a high-quality game."
The Dolphins squad is:
Sarel Erwee, Vaughn van
Jaarsveld, Marques Ackerman, Dane Vilas, Khaya Zondo (capt), Sibonelo Makhanya,
Daryn Dupavillon, Andile Phehlukwayo, Senuran Muthusamy, Keshav Maharaj, Eathan
Bosch, Okuhle Cele, Prenelan Subrayen, Lwandiswa Zuma
The Warriors squad is:
Matthew Breetzke, Gihahn
Cloete, Jon-Jon Smuts (capt), Sinethemba Qeshile, Yaseen Vallie, Onke Nyaku,
Sithembile Langa, Thomas Kaber, Sisanda Magala, Andrew Birch, Lutho Sipamla,
Lesiba Ngoepe, Jade de Klerk, Marco Marais