Lions will treat Dolphins with respect
The Sunfoil Dolphins are full of confidence after their comprehensive innings and 247-run win over the Nashua Titans, but they are also well aware of the danger posed by the bizhub Highveld Lions ahead of their meeting in the Sunfoil Series at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead this week.
"That's exactly how we want to play and hopefully we can take that forward," Sunfoil Dolphins skipper Daryn Smit said of his side's efficient display against the Nashua Titans.
"But we can't get ahead of ourselves, because the Lions are a very good side. We need to stay focused and keep winning," Smit said of his first victory as captain in the four-day competition.
"We bowled as a unit and the batters did very well after being put in on what I thought was a very sporting wicket. Vaughn van Jaarsveld played very well, but I was also very pleased to see Cody Chetty get a quick hundred, because he is a very good young player," Smit added.
The Sunfoil Dolphins captain also said that he was happy with the Sahara Stadium Kingsmead track, and hopes that it can be replicated for the match against the bizhub Highveld Lions.
"There was definitely something in it for the bowlers, and we had to work hard with the bat before we could cash in. And it was great to see the bowlers hitting the right areas. Kyle Abbott may have got the rewards in the second innings, but they all did well as a unit, and that's what we need to do going forward," he enthused.
Smit's counterpart, Stephen Cook, said his side would be wary of the Sunfoil Dolphins, especially on their home track. "That's the beauty of this competition. Everyone can beat everyone, and I guess that's why the franchise system has produced so many quality players for the national set-up. It's tough cricket, and you have to work hard for runs and wickets," he pointed out.
Cook was also encouraged by his side's scrap for a draw against the Chevrolet Knights, especially after their surprise defeat to the Chevrolet Warriors in the previous match.
"I think we can put down the Warriors match to a bad day at the office. It's unusual for us to get rolled over for 59, and I think the boys bounced back well in Potch, where we scored 300 twice in tough conditions," he reflected.
"I thought Temba Bavuma's ton was a really good knock, and you could see that the guys are really hungry to do well.
"The Cobras are obviously well ahead of the rest of us on the table, but we have two games in hand," Cook said of the bizhub Highveld Lions' aspirations in the competition.
"But we will respect the Dolphins. Some people say that the track against the Titans suited the bowlers, so the Dolphins must have played pretty well to score 550. We know it won't be easy down there, but we look forward to the challenge," Cook said.
Play at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead starts at 9am from Thursday morning.