Paarl Rocks captain Faf du Plessis was pleased to overcome the absence of an additional batsman en route to an 86-run victory over the Cape Town Blitz in the Mzansi Super League at Boland Park on Sunday.
The Rocks lost batsmen Aiden Markram and JP Duminy to injuries prior to the start of the tournament. The young Kyle Verreynne was added to the squad in Markram’s absence, but not named in Sunday’s XI, while the Rocks haven’t yet announced Duminy’s replacement.
The Rocks, regardless, climbed to a final total of 170-9 on the back of Du Plessis’ 38 and the same score from opener Henry Davids. All-rounder Dwaine Pretorius, meanwhile, contributed 34.
‘It’s good to start the campaign on a winning note. For me, it’s all about winning your home games. Injuries created a bit of a headache. I thought we were a batter short,’ said Du Plessis.
‘We were 10 runs short, but the bowlers bowled smartly and that makes it easy to captain. We have a lot more variety in our team this time around.’
Fast bowler Hardus Viljoen was named Player of the Match, after completing telling figures of 2-9 in two overs, as the Blitz collapsed to 84 all out. His haul comprised the key dismissals of Proteas pair Quinton de Kock and Janneman Malan.
‘It was a great team performance. We thought we were a bit short at the halfway stage, but the bowling group executed their skills well. I think it was my day. It was good to take the wickets of Quinton and Malan early,’ added Viljoen.