Cup the start of new era in KZN cricket
Pietermaritzburg – The opening round of the 2016 Africa T20 Cup from
Friday to Sunday at the Pietermaritzburg Oval signals the start of the
domestic season in the province while also represents the start of a new
era for cricket in the region.
KwaZulu-Natal Inland play host to North West, Western Province and Namibia
for Pool A’s group stage clashes and having reached the final in the
tournament’s inaugural edition in 2015, the team from the capital are
eager to put in a strong showing in their own backyard this weekend.
Up against North West on Friday, Western Province on Saturday and Namibia
on Sunday, the side knows all too well they will have their work cut out
for them but also bring good confidence with them having been the
pace-setters at Provincial level during the 2015/16 across all formats.
Sunfoil Dolphins coach, Grant Morgan – standing in for regular KZN Inland
coach, Shane Burger who is currently doing duty with the national ‘A’ team
in Australia – is however confident the men from Maritzburg have what it
“We’re now the guys other teams are chasing and so yes, the pressure is on
us to perform but we want that pressure; we’ve earned it!” says Morgan.
“Like us, the other sides have named some strong squads, each with a
couple of match-winners, but that’s what you want – the better the teams
that come to Pietermaritzburg, the greater the opportunity for our guys.
“We've had a really good build-up, including a couple of games against a
near full strength Knights side, so we're ready,” he adds.
Having taken the reigns of KZN’s Franchise side in May 2016, Morgan has
put in endless hours behind the scenes with many of the Sunfoil Dolphins,
KZN and KZN Inlands players alike during the off- and ongoing pre-season.
Much of the focus of his efforts have been on instilling the correct
mindset within both the Dolphins and his enlarged group of playing
personnel, with the Africa T20 Cup getting underway this weekend signaling
the start of the application of that fresh approach.
“The Inland squad has continually been developing and growing from a core
of just four guys back in 2012 to the unit that it is today.
“A lot of the guys in the squad have lived together, now played together
for two or so years and as a result, have formed a brotherhood, which is
“They’ve also built up quite a good T20 record over the past three years.
“Now is the time for the who have been part of the setup for quite a while
to perform and from that, be pulled up through to the Dolphins.
“You want that pulling effect to develop right the way through all levels
– from school and academy level to Provincial, Franchise and, ultimately,
“That’s the mindset we want to create here in KZN going forward, and it
starts with the Africa T20 Cup this weekend.”
Having recently returned from an off-season stint in England, Sarel Erwee
will again captain the KZN Inland team this weekend with Mbasa Gqadushe –
who took over from Erwee last season up the regular skipper’s Dolphins
call-up – waiting in the wings if needed.
Two games take place daily with the opening fixture taking place from
09h45-12h55 and all the action from the second clash – which involves KZN
Inland on all three days this weekend – unfolding from 13h15-16h25.
Fans are urged to get their slice of the action by purchasing their ticket
at R40 for adults and R30 for pensioners and children.
More information can be found at
KwaZulu-Natal Inland Squad:
Sarel Erwee (captain), Craig Alexander, Tshepang Dithole, Mbasa
Gqadushe, Graham Hume, Sohail Mahmoud, Kurtlyn Mannikam, Attie Maposa,
Lefa Mosena, Kyle Nipper, Ruhan Pretorius, Mthokozisi Shezi, Vaughn van