Fast bowler Kagiso Rabada is eager to set an early precedent, as the Jozi Stars and Cape Town Blitz contest the opening match of the 2019 Mzansi Super League at the Wanderers on Friday.
The Blitz and Stars met three times in last year’s inaugural tournament. The former won in Johannesburg and the latter triumphed in Cape Town. The final was also at Newlands, where the Stars beat the Blitz to clinch the maiden title.
‘It is a big clash. It will be nice to start off on a winning note. Blitz is a quality side and will come out guns blazing,’ said Rabada, who has been retained as the Stars’ local marquee player.
‘I feel that we have had some good training in the last couple of days since the team got together this week. Every game is big, and there does not seem to be a weak link in this tournament.’
The reigning champions also retained Proteas batsman Rassie van der Dussen and Reeza Hendricks – as well as former Test spinner Simon Harmer. They lost 2018 captain Dane Vilas to the Durban Heat, though. Barbadian Donovan Miller, meanwhile, has succeeded former head coach Enoch Nkwe.
Nkwe vacated the post after being named interim team director for the Proteas’ recent tour of India, which yielded a T20I series draw and three heavy Test defeats.