Welcome boost for Warriors

MAJOR THREAT: Colin Ackermann has been identified by the Lions as a danger man. Picture: GALLO IMAGES
 Colin Ackermann.Picture: GALLO IMAGES

Good news as all-rounder Ackermann gets fitness green light for Dolphins encounter

There was good news for the Warriors yesterday when all-rounder Colin Ackermann was declared fit to face the Dolphins in their Momentum Cup One-Day clash at St George’s Park today (2pm).

Ackermann missed the victory over the Knights in Kimberley on Saturday after injuring a finger against the Cobras in East London, but Warriors coach Malibongwe Maketa said yesterday Ackermann had recovered sufficiently to come into the frame for selection. “Yes, it’s good news,” he said. “Colin is fit and ready to go. “He is an integral part of our squad and it is great to have him back.”

The Warriors mentor is pleased his team managed to pull off an opening victory at the weekend and is aiming to ride that success today.

“It was nice to actually finally win a game,” he said. “

“We had been below par in the first two games.

“To come back after posting a low score and showing some fighting spirit was quite encourThe aging for us and it really proves what we are about when we actually do the small things right.”

The Warriors will enjoy backto-back home games this weekend, starting with the Dolphins tonight and then the Titans in East London on Sunday.

“These [home matches] become crucial,” Maketa said.

“In this competition, if you win all your home games and you win one away from home, it almost guarantees you a playoff.

“That’s how we are looking at it approaching these two upcoming games.”

The Warriors played three spinners in their game against the Knights in captain Jon-Jon Smuts, Simon Harmer and Colin Ingram. It is expected that trend will continue tonight.

“The wicket in the last game did help us in terms of that spin option,” Maketa said.

“We have more than enough bowling options so we just need to make sure that people do their jobs in terms of the batting.

“But also, the bowlers need to take wickets up front and restrict in the middle periods as well.”

Maketa was referring to his team conceding more than 300 runs in the first two matches.

astute coach said his team were looking to replicate the success they enjoyed in the CSA T20 Challenge, where they lost in the final to the Titans.

“We are very hungry to finish strongly,” Maketa said.

“We have competed very well in white-ball cricket in this format and it is really encouraging and we want to finish off well.

“We want to complement what we did well at the beginning of the season by doing well in the one-day format.”

The team will be without their “finisher”, Christiaan Jonker, who has undergone a knee operation and will miss the remainder of the season.

“We miss him most definitely. A player of his calibre and what he’s achieved for us,” Maketa said.

“He’s a big loss. In saying that, it’s created an opportunity for us to give others a chance to do the finishing role going forward.”

Tickets for the match are on sale either at the St George’s ticket office or on www.ticketpro.co.za

When fans buy tickets online they can nominate a school or club which will receive 50% of the purchase price of the ticket.

Tickets cost R40 for adults, R20 for scholars and pensioners and R30 for students with a student card.

The Warriors squad:

Colin Ackermann, Colin Ingram, Gihahn Cloete, Aya Gqamane, Simon Harmer, Jerry Nqolo, Andrew Birch, Lesiba Ngoepe, Jon-Jon Smuts (capt), Yaseen Vallie, Basheer Walters, Kelly Smuts, Sisanda Magala, David White

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