The Knights are looking to reel in full match points against the Warriors in Kimberley on Friday after two narrow losses in their opening three matches.
Knights coach Alan Kruger insists he is not panicking just yet, but says there are concerns with their poor start to their One-Day Cup campaign, ahead of match four for the Central Franchise against the Warriors in Kimberley on Friday.
The hosts have lost two out of their first three matches, with a washed-out fixture sandwiched in between, meaning they now head to the Diamond Oval knowing that time is quickly running out in their quest to reach the play-offs.
‘I won’t say that I’m worried, but I won’t say I’m not concerned,’ said Kruger. ‘However, there’s nothing to panic about just yet. We still have seven matches of the campaign remaining and a lot can happen.
‘I think four wins is what we will need to reach the semi-finals, so we’re not yet down and out. But we do need to start winning, and hopefully that will happen in Kimberley.’
The home side was beaten by the Cape Cobras in the last game in Bloemfontein on Tuesday, a match they should have won after reducing the visitors to 15 for three in pursuit of a 280-plus target.
‘What happened in Bloemfontein was our own fault,’ lamented Kruger. ‘We had opportunities in the game, but we just didn’t put the nail in the coffin to beat them.’
Kyle Verreynne was their nemesis in that last game, with his maiden career century propelling the Cobras to a superb win. Knights captain Pite van Biljon was disappointed with their performance in the match.
‘We were probably a few runs short and needed to score slightly quicker in those middle overs,’ added Van Biljon.
‘After that, we made the perfect start thanks to Marchant, who blew the top order away. Unfortunately, we couldn’t drag it out, they got a bit of momentum and finished well at the end.’
The Warriors, meanwhile, will enter the game hoping to maintain their unbeaten start to the term. After beating the Cobras in their opening game, their second fixture was washed out.
Coach Rivash Gobind is seeking more consistency from his players.
‘We haven’t played as consistently as we would have liked, but it’s nice to have some points on the board,’ said Gobind. ‘I thought we were very good in that first game in Paarl, so we’re just excited to have another opportunity.
‘We have quite an exciting team at the moment, there are a lot of young guys in our make-up with great careers ahead of them. So we’re looking forward to them putting in more consistent performances.
‘The core of our team is similar to what it’s always been in white-ball cricket. It’s a nice blend, even though there has been a little bit of a transition.
‘But that’s been a while back now and we’ve had quite a number of white-ball practices and two games out of the way already. So we’re well into it now.’
‘We don’t take anyone lightly – they’re a good white-ball side, they have some influential players and players that have made a massive impact on franchise cricket in the past,’ concluded Gobind.
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