Impressive Lions favourites against third-placed Warriors!
Lions to win the match!
The Momentum One-Day Cup will continue on Sunday with the second-placed Lions facing off against Warriors who are just a spot behind them in the points.
The in-form Lions outfit would be raring to avenge their defeat at Port Elizabeth earlier in the reason when they take the field at the Wanderers Stadium. In their last game, Lions registered a convincing 87-run win against the struggling Knights side. Batting first, Lions went onto recover and post a pretty impressive 275-9 on the board after they were reduced to 38-3 inside the powerplay overs.
Just like the batting, the bowling attack was put under pressure by Knights’ opening batters’ Jacques Snyman and Andries Gous but spinners Aaron Phangiso and Bjorn Fortuin helped Lions complete a superb victory by picking up six wickets as a pair.
Meanwhile, Warriors suffered a loss against the rampaging Dolphins in a match in which they were completely outplayed. Having managed to post just 237-9 in the first inning, Warriors’ impressive bowling attack struggled as Dophins’ Sarel Erwee starred with an unbeaten century. In fact, a massive 137-run opening partnership between Erwee and Roelofsen helped Dolphins round off a 7-wicket win.
Just as expected, Lions batting has been a massive strength for them in this tournament. While wicket-keeper batsman Ryan Rickelton has been one of the best players among all the teams by scoring 334 runs in five games, young all-rounder Delano Potgieter has also pivotal with three fifties in four games. Even Nicky van den Bergh came to the party against Knights with a 91-run knock after the top-order had been dismissed pretty early.
On the bowling front, it has been skipper Aaron Phangiso who has been the star of the show with 12 wickets until now. He has also found some good support from the pace bowling duo of Eldred Hawken and Beuran Hendricks in the last two matches. In fact, Phangiso and Hendricks played a major role in the win against Knights with four and three wickets respectively.
Although Bjorn Fortuin has played only two games until now, it wouldn’t wise to discount his skillset. Unfortunately, Lions will miss out on Hendricks’ services as he is part of the Proteas ODI squad for the series against Australia.
Ryan Rickelton, Dominic Hendricks, Kagiso Rapulana, Nicky van den Bergh (WK), Wihan Lubbe, Delano Potgieter, Bjorn Fortuin, Malusi Siboto, Aaron Phangiso (C), Eldred Hawken, Nono Pongolo
|N Van den Bergh||91||112||8||2||81.25|
Aaron Phangiso, Reeza Hendricks, Johannes Diseko, Ryan Rickelton, Dominic Hendricks, NJ Van den Bergh, Wihan Lubbe, Bjorn Fortuin, Delano Potgieter, Eldred Hawken, Ayavuya Myoli
Unlike Lions, the Warriors batsmen have been slightly inconsistent with none of their players crossing the 200-run mark until now. However, the trio of Edward Moore, Yaseen Vallie, and skipper Sinethemba Qeshile hold key to Warriors’ hopes of posting a good score against Lions. Moore, in particular, has managed to score 172 runs in just three games. Meanwhile, Qeshile also came up with a good 80-run knock in the loss against Dolphins.
With the ball, Warriors have a pretty talented bunch of players who didn’t quiet bowl at their best against Dolphins in the last match. Fast bowler Stefan Tait and leg-spinner Dyllan Matthews have been the two best performers so far with six wickets each. All-rounder Onke Nyaku has also done pretty well to pick up five wickets.
Matthew Breetzke, Edward Moore, Sinethemba Qeshile (C & WK), Yaseen Vallie, Lesiba Ngoepe, Onke Nyaku, Marco Marais, Sisanda Magala, Dyllan Matthews, Andrew Birch, Stefan Tait
Andrew Birch, Yaseen Vallie, SSB Magala, Edward Moore, Ayabulela Gqamane, Marco Marais, Sinethemba Qeshile, Matthew Breetzke, Lesiba Ngoepe, Stefan Tait, Jade de Klerk
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||14||0 mm.||2.61 k/h||From: ENE||96%|
|03h||13||0 mm.||1.81 k/h||From: NNE||73%|
|06h||16||0 mm.||2.35 k/h||From: NE||61%|
|09h||17||0 mm.||1.93 k/h||From: N||100%|
|12h||24||0 mm.||1.52 k/h||From: N||57%|
|15h||22||0 mm.||3.95 k/h||From: W||73%|
|18h||20||0 mm.||3.8 k/h||From: WNW||86%|
|21h||18||1.94 mm.||1.66 k/h||From: SSW||100%|
The Wanderers Stadium is pretty well known to produce surfaces that provide a lot of bounce and pace and this gives something to both the batsmen and also pace bowlers. In the only game that Lions have played here in this tournament, the Knights seamers got quite a lot of assistance during the first 10 overs of the game.
However, Lions recovered pretty well as the pitch eased out after which their spinners wreaked havoc in the second innings. We are sure that they can’t be a more sporting pitch than that. Meanwhile, Sunday is expected to be a pretty cold day with AccuWeather also predicting for some showers. There is a massive 42% chance for rain and this could mean that a full game might be on the cards.
Honestly, one doesn’t need to really introduce the Wanderers Stadium given that it is one of the most well-known grounds in the world. After all, this is the same ground where AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla went crazy against West Indies a few years ago.
The Wanderers has also hosted an ODI and T20 match against England and Australia respectively in the past few weeks. While the T20I saw Australia belting a huge score after batting first, England managed to track down a total of 256 in the ODI match which took place three weeks ago.
Unless the pitch sports a dry look out of nowhere, it is a pretty easy decision to field first at this venue. The threat of rain should also make the decision a no-brainer for the captains.
We are going for a comfortable Lions victory in this match and this is largely down to their in-form batting line-up. Someone like Ryan Rickelton has the ability to seal a match single-handedly. Further, an already solid spin-bowling attack has been further strengthened by the inclusion of Bjorn Fortuin. It is going to be an uphill task for Warriors unless someone like Edward Moore comes up with a special knock.
Lions to win the match!