The NMB Giants will play host to Paarl Rocks on Wednesday, 27 November in what will be another top-of-the-table clash in Port Elizabeth.
Speaking at the Giants’ press conference on Monday, players Beuran Hendricks and Marco Marais said the team’s chemistry was “very much alive” with the last two weeks’ successes contributing to the players’ performance.
Already halfway through the competition and on top of the log, the team feels comfortable with their progress.
“There isn’t too much pressure and being on top of the table is a positive driving force for us. For every game it will just boil down to our approach to any situation we face and how we can finish well on a high,” Hendricks said.
Whilst not having had any game-time thus far, Hendricks said he was fit for action, should the team need him.
“The team is quite successful at the moment and if you’re a good side you don’t tamper with winning ways. I am happy to buy my time and if the team needs me, I am ready,” he said.
When asked about the pressures of playing T20 cricket in such a high-profile competition, Marais said having a definitive role in the team, allows each individual to fine-tune his craft.
“Yes, it can be difficult to adapt as you play back-to-back matches against different teams, but the one thing that makes it easier is role definition.
“This is the tournament where you really want to do well and show the world what you can do. Our roles were defined before the tournament started and each player knows what he has to do.“When we practice, we practice for situations you would be faced with come game day,” Marais said.
Marais added that it was extremely beneficial to have the likes of Jon-Jon Smuts and Heino Khun, who generously offer words of wisdom and advice to the younger teammates, be part of the team.
“Even though Farhaan [Behardien] got injured he still sends us messages. It just helps to be able to fall back on their knowledge – batting with them and spending time with them off the field.”
Being touted as a T20 ‘specialist finisher’, Marais had some shoes to fill at the beginning of the MSL2.0, but he has indeed showcased his ability to win a game from tight positions.
Looking back at the Giants’ last five games, of which three have been at home, the team has become accustomed to their home conditions. As such, they look to dominate home fixtures and of course prepare for any and all changes that they will face when they play away.
With two nail-biting wins against the Cape Town Blitz and Durban Heat last week, the Giants find themselves on a continuous run of form. It is with this that they look to seal off a fourth home win against Paarl Rocks.
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