Warriors coach Malibongwe Maketa is only interested in beating the Lions on Thursday as his side look for a One Day Cup playoff spot.
The Eastern Cape side were badly beaten by the Titans in their clash in Benoni on Tuesday, to let slip their chance of an automatic ticket to the final.
Now they have to do things the hard way, by playing in the Qualifier at the weekend, before facing the team that ends top in the March 31 final, should they get there.
But first they have to overcome a tough hurdle in the form of the Lions at St George’s Park. ‘We are still confident of making the playoffs,’ Maketa explained. ‘Yes there are permutations, but our focus is just simply on winning our game.
‘That’s the big thing for us. Whatever happens in the other games is out of control. The best we can do is go out there, win our game and then worry about everything else.’
The Warriors folded for the lowest score of any side this season when they were bowled out for 147 against the Titans. They were beaten with more than 20 overs to spare.
It was a poor performance for Maketa, whose side are now fourth, but will seal a place in the playoffs should they win, because the two sides immediately above them, the Dolphins and the Knights, are meeting in Durban.
‘We are very disappointed with the way we batted, take nothing away from the way they bowled, but we know we’re a better batting side than that,’ he explained. ‘So yes, we’ve had a blip, but we’re still confident.
‘At the moment we know we’ve got effectively a quarter-final tomorrow that we need to make sure we win. We’ll have to focus on that for now, it’s a big game on our hands and we’ll take it from there.’
Lions coach Geoffrey Toyana saw his side’s participation in the competition ended after a high-scoring affair against the Knights on Tuesday. The defending champions fell four runs short of reaching their 312 target, despite centuries by Rassie van der Dussen and Dwaine Pretorius.
It left their coach a proud man, although he wants to ensure they end the season with a win at least. ‘The message for the last game is just to finish strong,’ Toyana added. ‘We really had a bad tournament, even though there was good fight from the boys yesterday.
‘It was disappointing to have lost, especially after two good hundreds. But we’ll take lessons from the game. Hopefully we’ll be able to bounce back tomorrow.’
Photo: Michael Sheehan/Gallo Images