Cape Town - The announcement of JP Duminy as skipper for the RAM Slam T20 Challenge and the possible availability of Wayne Parnell have provided two welcome boosts for the Cape Cobras in the build-up to the opening clash of the competition against the Dolphins.
Pieter Malan underlined the depth of talent available to the selection committee of the Cobras when he hammered an undefeated 91 on Monday in the first of two warm-up games at Newlands to chase down 184 for four made by Duminy’s team.
Duminy struck 44 on Monday and the stylish left-handed international has been named skipper of the side for the upcoming T20 domestic showpiece.
The series starts on Sunday for the Cobras, when they clash with the Dolphins at SuperSport Park in Centurion.
“JP’s numbers speak for themselves. I don’t need to add much. JP is the most successful South African batsman in this format. He is one of the best T20 batsmen in the world,” Ashwell Prince, the coach, said about his appointment.
Duminy has scored 1 700 runs in 73 T20 Internationals at an average of 36.95 and a strike-rate of more than 123. He led the South African T20 unit to a clean sweep against Bangladesh recently when Faf du Plessis was indisposed through injury.
Prince applauded the batsmen for a collectively good performance in the warm-up game on Monday. He said there is much more explosive depth than was the case in the Momentum One Day Cup campaign in 2016/17. It was underlined by a fifty from Jason Smith and 64 by the explosive Richard Levi.
But the Cobras coach was unimpressed with the bowling and added there was much work to be done in the build-up to the domestic T20 tournament.
Parnell was ruled out of the T20 series and a part of the One Day Internationals against Bangladesh with a groin injury. But Prince sounded optimistic that in the six days leading up to the opening clash at Centurion, the all-rounder can return to full fitness.