Morne Morkel will make his return to competitive cricket when the Titans face the Warriors in Port Elizabeth starting Tuesday.
Morkel is expected to play for the Titans as he steps up his preparations ahead of a Proteas return, while Daniel Sincuba is expected to bolster the batting.
Assistant coach Mandla Mashimbyi is desperate for the side to bounce back from ’14 overs of hell’ when they take on the Warriors in their second Sunfoil Series match of the season.
The defending champions recorded the second-shortest first-class innings in South African history by being bowled out for 57 in 14.2 overs by the Knights over the weekend.
This was the cause for their four-wicket loss at Centurion and they will be looking to bounce back in the Eastern Cape this week.
‘We were bossing the game until the third innings,’ Mashimbyi said. ‘At that point against the Knights, we were on the receiving end. They bowled absolutely well and I call it 14 overs from hell, that’s what it was. So disappointed, yes we were.’
But he is confident of receiving an immediate reaction from his charges. ‘We’re upbeat for the next game,’ he explained. ‘We left everything, whatever happened, there at Centurion, we left it at Centurion. I don’t think it will happen again.
‘Our bowlers were very good in that first game, the batting does need a bit of brushing up here and there. So now we’re just looking forward.’
As for the Warriors, who suffered an innings defeat to the Dolphins, Mashimbyi insisted they were not taking them for granted.
‘Two teams that are coming from a loss, so it’s quite tough,’ he added. ‘We’re not going to be underestimating them in any way or form. Because on their day, they can beat anybody.’
Warriors coach Malibongwe Maketa concedes they were not good enough against the Dolphins and have to improve. ‘That was not the start we set ourselves up for,’ he said.
‘We worked so hard and to go out and start like that was disappointing.
‘But we have faith in the players and we’re confident we can rectify things this week.’
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