Warriors to start from scratch against the Knights

By Sport24

Warriors coach Rivash Gobind was full of pride for his players this past week, but he knows they will have to do it all over again when they welcome the Knights to Port Elizabeth for their latest 4-Day Domestic Series encounter starting on Monday. The Eastern Cape franchise produced an outstanding come-from-behind victory against the Dolphins, where they overturned a 160-run deficit to win by 93 runs in Durban. It was their first triumph of the season and now back at St George’s Park, they will entertain a wounded Knights side, who themselves were on the wrong end of an embarrassing innings loss to the Highveld Lions. The Central Franchise lost seven for three in that game, one of the worst collapses ever witnessed in the competition’s history.

But Gobind is not reading anything into it. “With Franchise cricket I always say that any given day, any given game, the teams are always close together and it’s what you produce day in and day out,” he explained. “So expect them to bounce back from that. We need to prepare very well and we need to take some lessons out of what we did here because there’s definitely some areas we can improve on.”

Gobind, who is in his first full-season in charge of the Warriors, looked back at the game in Durban with immense pride, saying it reflected well what the franchise was about. “We started the game okay, but then we collapsed from 120 odd for two to 175,” he lamented. “After that we got together as a group, understanding very well that we needed to win pretty much every session from there. “We went a long way to doing that, bar a few sessions, so it was an outstanding performance for the guys to come back, especially after being so far behind after the first innings. “This group of guys have a lot of personal pride and pride in the team. That shone through brightly over these last few days and I’m very pleased.”

Nicky Boje, meanwhile, was predictably downbeat after what happened in Johannesburg, but felt it was part of the game. “Yes, it was a disappointing defeat, we made some mistakes throughout, but that’s also part of the game,” he said. “What we need to do is to try and reflect on the game, learn from it, see what positives there were and try to implement them in the next game.” Where there any positives to take out of the result? According to Boje there certainly were, and he remains upbeat about their trip to PE. “There may not have been many cricket positives, but more mental stuff that we can look at,” he added. “I think we can implement some of those lessons in our game going into the next one. It will be a tough game against the Warriors, but every match at this level is challenging. We’re looking forward to bouncing back.”

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Above: Gihahn Cloete during day 1 of the 4 Day Franchise Series match between Hollywoodbets Dolphins and Warriors at Kingsmead Cricket Ground on October 22, 2018 in Durban, South Africa. (Photo by Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images)

Published by Sport24 on 26 October 2018