The Highveld Lions will hand out three new caps as they find themselves thoroughly depleted for Saturday’s Momentum One-Day Cup clash with the Cape Cobras in Johannesburg. Although the Nashua Cape Cobras have lost more players to the South Africa A squad – five players to the Lions’ three – the Lions will also be without Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Hardus Viljoen and Thami Tsolekile due to injury. Seamers, Matt McGillivray and Matthew Arnold, will, therefore, come in, along with 20-year-old all-rounder, Bjorn Fortuin.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Dominic Hendricks, who has played no more than a handful of games for the bizhub Highveld Lions in the past, is also in the mix. “Half of these guys haven’t played in a televised game yet and they’re playing against the defending champions, so it’s going to be tough. Hopefully there won’t be too many nerves – hopefully the butterflies will be flying in sync,” said coach Geoffrey Toyana. The Cobras have a more recognisable squad, but will hand a debut to wicketkeeper-batsman Clyde Fortuin due to Dane Vilas’ South Africa A call-up.
With regular skipper Justin Ontong missing along with Vilas, the Cobras will fall back on Robin Peterson for leadership as he returns from a six-week injury layoff. “He’s fit and ready to go, and hopefully he can carry on the form he’s been having this season because he’s been really good. He’ll bring a lot of positivity, which will be welcome in a side that’s been a little bit down in the Sunfoil Series. He’s the type of character that is an out-the-box thinker and always looks for solutions – much like Justin Ontong,” said coach Paul Adams.
The game starts at 15:00 and will be broadcast live on SuperSport 2.
HEAD TO HEAD – Highveld Lions vs Cape Cobras
Matches Played 22
Lions Win 5
Cobras Win 13