Man of the Match: Temba Bavuma
The Big Final, Winner Takes It All
Our Prediction is for Lions to win this game!
32 games have been done and dusted and now it is time for the big final of the 2019 CSA T20 Challenge. Lions would play in their home ground Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg as they take on the Warriors. Both the sides have deservingly made it to the finals as they stood one and two on the points table after the completion of the league stage.
Lions have been playing well in the last few games and they would have the advantage of playing in front of their home crowd. Warriors would take heart from the fact that they defeated Lions earlier in the season. The game has all the ingredients to be the grand finale of what has been a competitive season although rain played spoilsport in several games.
It was a comprehensive win for Temba Bavuma’s side in their semi-final against the Dolphins. They made a good comeback with the ball after taking hit in the initial overs and when it came to their chase they were clinical all throughout. Bavuma would like to use home advantage and familiarity with the conditions as they play the high-pressure contest.
Ryan Rickelton has been in sublime form this season and provided his side with the perfect start in the last game. Dussen and skipper Bavuma were clinical in their approach making important fifties. Reeza Hendricks has had a rough ride in the last few games and he would be due for a good score in the next game. The side bats deep with Wiaan Mulder, Dwaine Pretorius and Nono Pongolo having a good range of shots in their armory. They would be tough to bowl at in the next game.
Bjorn Fortuin has had a good season with the ball and would like to finish it in style. Aaron Phangiso is also bowling a good line and look to do the same. With Lizaad Williams, Migael Pretorius and Wiaan Mulder their bowling attack has good balance and variety which shall surely test Warriors’ batting.
Ryan Rickelton(w), Reeza Hendricks, Temba Bavuma(c), Rassie van der Dussen, Wiaan Mulder, Dwaine Pretorius, Nono Pongolo, Migael Pretorius, Bjorn Fortuin, Aaron Phangiso, Lizaad Williams
Nono Pongolo, Aaron Phangiso, Reeza Hendricks, Ryan Rickelton, Dwaine Pretorius, Lizaad Williams, Willem Mulder, Bjorn Fortuin, Rassie van der Dussen, Migael Pretorius, Temba Bavuma
JJ Smuts would be happy with the performance his side put up in the semi-finals against the Cape Cobras. They batted well to put up a big score on the board and when it came to their bowling they applied the brakes at the right moment to win the game comfortably. Having defeated Lions earlier in the season the skipper would look to carry the confidence into the next game.
Matthew Breetzke has been brilliant this season and did well in the last game as well. JJ Smuts and wicketkeeper Sinethemba Qeshile also did well with the bat. The side has a good batting line-up with Gihahn Cloete at the top and powerful hitters like Marco Marais, Lesiba Ngoepe and Andrew Birch towards the end of the innings. The only problem the side has faced this season has had to do with inconsistency in their batting and they would like to fix that in the big final.
Andrew Birch their main bowler has done well with the ball in the last two games which adds to their confidence. Sisanda Magala and Lutho Sipamla are also in good form at the moment. With the vast experience that Smuts has they do have a quality bowling attack going into the next game.
Matthew Breetzke, Gihahn Cloete, JJ Smuts (c), Sinethemba Qeshile (wk), Marco Marais, Onke Nyaku, Thomas Kaber, Sisanda Magala, Jade de Klerk, Lutho Sipamla, Andrew Birch
Andrew Birch, Sithembile Langa, JJ Smuts, SSB Magala, Onke Nyaku, Sinethemba Qeshile, Marco Marais, Matthew Breetzke, Lesiba Ngoepe, Gihahn Cloete, Jade de Klerk
There is a forecast for clear skies on May 05 at Johannesburg and the conditions would be perfect for a competitive game of cricket. The pitch has offered even bounce and pace and has been a good one to bat on. A score of around 170 runs should be good on this surface is given that it would be a high-pressure contest.
The Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg has always seen high scoring encounters and is the best one for batting in South Africa. The stroke-makers have always done well on this ground Bowlers always have found tough bowling on this ground where there is no room for error with perfect batting conditions.
The pitch is flat in the four games that have already been played on this surface this season the side batting first has won on three occasions. With lightning fast outfield the skipper winning the toss would like to bat first and put up a big score on the board.
It is the big final and pressure would be on both sides. Both the teams ended the league stage on an equal footing and Warriors defeated the Lions in the only completed game between the two sides. The Lions have looked the better side of the two in the last few games with their most bankable players gaining form. They have a better batting line-up in comparison to the Warriors and are playing at their home ground and this will make them favorites to lift the title in this edition of the CSA T20 Challenge.
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