Cape Town Knight Riders head coach Jacques Kallis says he wants to bring the T20 Global League trophy to his home town.
The Knight Riders had their launch at Newlands on Monday, presenting Kallis and their captain and Proteas marquee player, JP Duminy, to the media.
When asked how highly he rates his side’s chances in the competition, Kallis responded with certainty, saying that ‘CTKR are the side to watch out for.’
‘Hundred percent [we want to win it]’, he said exclusively to SACricketmag.com. ‘I think all eight teams will be doing that, they are all well balanced.
‘It might take a little while to figure out each team’s strategy and what their strengths and weaknesses are, but I think it’s the sides who are first to figure that out, who will be successful.’
‘It’s exciting … the bunch of guys we have,’ he continued. ‘We were lucky to get most of the players we wanted. Along with the staff and JP as captain, we have the recipe for a good side. Hopefully, we can gel together and play some good cricket.’
The Proteas legend followed up his success as a player into his coaching career for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL.
The India franchise made it to the qualifier two of the IPL this season, but lost to the Mumbai Indians, in what was a thrilling end to the tournament.
Despite the defeat, Kallis revealed that he will be taking some of his experience from his stint for KKR into his role as coach for the Cape Town franchise.
‘Yes, definitely,’ Kallis said when asked if he will replicate some of the same strategies he learned abroad. ‘The kind of cricket the Kight Riders are renowned for we will bring to Cape Town, it’s an exciting brand.
‘Every now and then we will try something different, but the people of Cape Town are going to enjoy the brand of cricket we are going to play.’
Jason Smith, who attended Kallis’ alma mater, Wynberg Boys’ High School, is one of the exciting CTKR youngsters who was picked at the T20 Global League draft on Sunday, and the Knight Riders coach is excited to work with and develop the young talent he has at his disposal.
‘There are a whole lot of youngsters. So, working with the big names and with the young players is important. We want to try and move their careers forward.
‘I’ve seen what the IPL has done for Indian cricket … from being mediocre to one of the biggest sides in the world.
‘We’ve seen a guy like Virat Kohli, who just came out of school and has become one of the biggest players in the world today.
‘I have no doubt that this league is going to do the same for our young talent and help them achieve their goals and dreams.’
Being an all-rounder himself, Kallis emphasised the importance of all-rounders in the modern game.
‘You have to have two aspects now … We are fortunate to have a lot of all-rounders in the side, we really wanted that and focused on getting that.
‘You definitely need to bat deep in T20 cricket, especially with the type of cricket we are trying to play.
‘Hopefully, those all-rounders we have will help us in this tournament.’
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