MECER NMMU1will be looking to flex their muscles when they face log-leaders and home side SA Home Loans Union in an NMB Premier League match which could decide the destination of the title.
NMMU1 have dominated the metro’s top league for some time now. In fact, they have won the title for the last five seasons and eight times in the last decade.
On the face of it, there is probably very little reason why they should not continue in that vein this season.
They have a star-studded side loaded with Eastern Province provincial players. Very few sides have been able to get the measure of them for the last decade or so and they have a structure to their club that has been very successful, thanks mainly to the intake of talented young cricketers every year.
Tomorrow they will call on David White, the experienced Umar Abrahams, Eddie Moore and Solo Nqweni to pull them through against what is likely to be a very spirited Union side.
Union have done everything that has been expected of a side serious about challenging for the league title. They have managed bonus- point wins throughout except for the match against PECC, when they collected a win without the extra point. They also had a rained out fixture.
Their results suggest they have been solid, but the match against NMMU1 will provide their toughest opposition this season. It will be interesting to see if they match NMMU1’s firepower. They will be relying on Michael Price, Arno Jacob, Riaan Venter, Chris Arnold and Ryan Harris to spring the upset victory.
Whichever teams wins the match will have a decided advantage in the title race.
Union have built up a 27-point lead on defending champions NMMU1. The students, though, have four games in hand. With a maximum of 24 points up for grabs in those four matches, NMMU1 are effectively three points behind Union with all matches equal.
This weekend’s fixtures are (home teams first, 10am start):
Tomorrow: SA Home Loans Union v Mecer NMMU1, Gelvandale v NMMU2, Despatch v Maritime Motors Old Grey, Buco Uitenhage v ADT Pirates, Northville v Welcome, Heatherbank v United Brothers, PECC v Motherwell
Sunday: NMMU1 v NMMU2, PECC v Welcome, Greenbushes v Motherwell.
The latest log is (11 matches unless stated):
1 SA Home Loans Union 68 (12), 2 Maritime Motors Old Grey 63 (13), 3 Mecer NMMU1 41 (8), 4 PECC 39 (12), 5 Despatch 38, 6 Heatherbank 31 (10), 7 NMMU2 31 (8), 8 Buco Uitenhage 29 (12), 9 United Brothers 29 (9), 10 Gelvandale 26, 11 Welcome 25, 12 Northville 19, 13 Greenbushes 15 (9), 14 Motherwell 13 (10), 15 Rhodes 10 (5), 16 Pirates 9 (10)