Warriors coach Rivash Gobind is hoping for a happy goodbye when he leads his team for one final time in their round-three 4-Day Domestic Series encounter against the Titans in Port Elizabeth from Monday.
The 37-year-old is leaving St George’s Park to take up the position of Afghanistan assistant coach, under the leadership of former Proteas star Lance Klusener.
‘It’s my last game at the Warriors,’ Gobind revealed. ‘It is a bitter-sweet feeling, that’s for sure.
‘But I leave behind a very strong group of players and hopefully a team that’s in a better place than when I inherited it.
‘The growth that a lot of these guys have shown in the short space of time is something that really excited me.
‘I’m convinced that their growth and drive for success is going to remain and they will become stronger. I will continue following them closely and I’m sure they’re going to do the Eastern Cape proud.’
The Warriors have had a steady start to 2019-20, losing their opening game to the Knights and then bouncing back with victory over defending champions the Lions this past week.
‘We’re pretty happy with the result, it was quite a tight game, a real scrap and I thought we fought very well in every innings and with every opportunity we had,’ Gobind explained. ‘I was very pleased for the guys that batted on the last day, Onke Nyaku and Matthew Breetzke.
‘They showed a lot of maturity and that’s really going to be good for them and for their careers.’
Their opponents, the Titans, will arrive in the windy city on the back of a win and a draw from their first two games. Gobind, who is yet to be replaced in his outgoing position, added: ‘It’s always a big battle against them. They’ve started the season pretty strongly as they always do.
‘But we’ll be at St George’s Park for our first game there this season and I’m sure all the lads will be excited. Hopefully we get a good four days, we know it will be tough, but we’ll be aiming to come out on top.’
Titans coach Mark Boucher, meanwhile, saw his side involved in a topsy-turvy affair this past week against the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras. They eventually held out for a draw on the final day after slipping to 79-6.
‘The game was a bit see-saw,’ said Boucher. ‘We started really well, then they had the big partnership, then we came back with seven quick wickets for next to nothing. Then we scored 400 odd runs and were always one step ahead of the game.
‘We were thinking of going for it and then lost those two quick wickets, and that was it. It was always going to be difficult for them to bowl us out in 48 overs.
‘So, I think it was a good game of cricket from both teams, equal shares which happened at the end of the day.’
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