The hosts will be eager to consolidate their lead in the six-team standings, while the visiting Giants are targeting a repeat of their success over the Jozi Stars.
Cape Town Blitz
Undefeated and brimming with confidence, the Blitz have successfully shaken off a wobbly couple of warm-ups to emerge loud and proud in the tournament proper. The combination of Dale Steyn and Anrich Nortje with the new ball is proving a real treat, with the latter the find of the competition so far. Long may his success continue. Locals aside, Cape Town’s Pakistan pairing of Asif Ali and Mohammad Nawaz has been broken by the latter’s departure for the T10 League in the United Arab Emirates. Farhaan Behardien and Quinton de Kock are back from Australia and ready to assume their key roles.
Nelson Mandela Bay Giants
What Behardien and de Kock are to the Blitz, Chris Morris and Imran Tahir will be for the Giants. The all-rounder and Tahir will offer great depth for a side eager to remain unbeaten. The Giants were hardly tested against the Jozi Stars, but will know the result would have read significantly less straightforward, had Ben Duckett not gone big. Leg-spinner Dyllan Matthews could crack the nod for the XI, perhaps at the expense of left-armer Aaron Phangiso.
Key battle within the war
De Kock versus Tahir, especially within the opening six-over powerplay, would make for an entertaining rivalry. The leg-spinner would turn the ball into the left-hander, making Tahir’s variations – the wrong’un, etc – all the more important.
The Blitz are on a roll – and will be back at their beloved Newlands. It’ll be a tight clash, particularly if the returning Proteas weigh in with some big performances. The Giants won’t be tournament walkovers, but won’t win this one.
Where to next
The Blitz will be in Johannesburg to take on the Stars at the Wanderers on Saturday, while the Giants will clash with the Spartans down the road in Centurion 24 hours later.