The Spartans are battling to stay in contention for a berth in the Mzansi Super League final, while the Rocks need to shrug off inconsistency at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Wednesday.
The Tshwane outfit have struggled to find a happy medium this tournament. Initially dubbed a ‘batting’ unit, they’ve since found some form with the ball, but now the men with the willow are not firing.
They’ve also lost Theunis de Bruyn to injury, compounding the exit of Lungi Ngidi last month. The Spartans will fondly remember their win over Wednesday’s opposition early in the tournament, when a 200-plus total almost wasn’t enough.
Whether Henry Davids will play, remains in the balance. He hurt a hamstring late last week, but the extent of the injury isn’t yet clear. His absence would be a hefty blow for a batting order reliant on him and Faf du Plessis. Victory for the Rocks would push them into the top half of the standings – and all but rule the Spartans out of the competition.
How their bowlers look to successfully combat England ODI captain Eoin Morgan, too, will be intriguing. The experienced left-hander is largely unorthodox and entirely enterprising. The return of Dwayne Bravo and Cameron Delport, of course, will also help.
Opposite ends of the spectrum
While the Jozi Stars’ Reeza Hendricks and others are bashing it about at the top of the order, lest we forget, Tshwane’s Dean Elgar continues to show there is room for workmanlike innings – and calculated hitting – in the shortest format.
The Rocks are not finding the momentum Du Plessis has effectively insisted upon, leaving the Spartans the likely winner of this one – and outside chancers for a spot in the final.
Where to next
The Rocks will head to Cape Town for a Western Cape derby against the Blitz on Friday, while the Spartans will face the Giants in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.