Photo Credit: Michael SheehanGall/ Cricket South Africa
Experienced Momentum Proteas all-rounder Marizanne Kapp highlights the importance of the upcoming matches against India in the ongoing Women’s T20 International (T20I) Tri-Series in East London as the team aim to take momentum into next month’s ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023.
South Africa will wrap up the round-robin phase of the Tri-Series with a return leg against India on Saturday, 28 January at 19h00 (SAST), with the clash broadcast live on SuperSport Cricket (Ch. 212).
This encounter will be the precursor to a hugely anticipated Tri-Series Final scheduled for Thursday, 02 February as both sides conclude their pre-World Cup preparations before the global showpiece gets underway in South Africa between 10 – 26 February.
Speaking ahead of tomorrow’s match-up, Kapp emphasised the significance of the two matches against India, particularly with the T20 World Cup around the corner.
“I think it’ll be very important for us as a team,” Kapp noted. “We’ve tried a few combinations, looked at a few players and we know this is not the easiest of wickets. So, if we can beat a team like India on these wickets, it’ll be a massive boost for us as a team.
“You want that bit of momentum when you go into a T20 World Cup,” the 33-year old commented.
In the first game of the Tri-Series, which also includes the West Indies, the Proteas Women went down to their subcontinent opponents by 27 runs before emphatically bouncing back to overpower the Windies in their subsequent matches, winning by 44 runs and 10 wickets respectively.
Despite success in their previous two matches, Kapp remains weary of the challenges posed by India, specifically against their spin attack led by Deepti Sharma.
“In these conditions you have to be positive. The first few games we probably battered within ourselves a bit because of these conditions that don’t really suit us,” the Gqeberha-born star said.
“It was and has been tough out there, I’m not going to lie. Usually, I’m someone that prefers spin and I quite enjoy facing spin, but it’s really been a challenge on these wickets. So, if we can go out there tomorrow and just be positive and clear with our plans, it should do us good.
On an individual front, the current triangular competition has been fruitful for Kapp, with the talented all-rounder taking responsibility with both bat and ball after being asked to slot in at three in the batting order while continuing to open the bowling for South Africa.
With the bat, Kapp produced a score of 22 against the Indians before recording her second career half-century with a crucial 52 in the first outing up against the West Indies. Although she has only bagged one wicket with her right-arm medium deliveries, (1 / 30 vs India), Kapp has continued to set the tone up front for the South African seam attack.
“It’s been a good challenge for me,” the right-hand batter said.
“The past year, two years, I’ve really enjoyed batting again, whether it’s ODI cricket or T20 cricket. I back myself again, it’s not always been easy on these wickets, but I know we are not always going to play on wickets like these and then I can express myself a bit better.
“It’s been a good challenge. It’s sometimes tough, especially with the heat out here in East London, and it’s a ground where you have to run most of your runs. It’s been a challenge, but it’s been a good challenge and I feel like as a senior player, I can bring a lot of stability in that number three role for my team.
Momentum Proteas 17-player squad for T20I Series (vs India and West Indies):
Suné Luus (Fidelity Titans) (Captain), Chloé Tryon (Hollywoodbets Dolphins) (Vice-Captain), Anneke Bosch (North West Dragons), Tazmin Brits (Six Gun Grill Garden Route Badgers), Nadine de Klerk (Six Gun Grill Western Province), *Annerie Dercksen (Six Gun Grill Garden Route Badgers), Lara Goodall (Six Gun Grill Western Province), Shabnim Ismail (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Sinalo Jafta (Six Gun Grill Western Province), Marizanne Kapp (Eastern Province), Ayabonga Khaka (DP World Lions), Masabata Klaas (North West Dragons), *Tebogo Macheke (Fidelity Titans), Nonkululeko Mlaba (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Tumi Sekhukhune (DP World Lions), Delmi Tucker (Six Gun Grill Western Province), Laura Wolvaardt (Six Gun Grill Western Province)
T20I Tri-Series (South Africa, India, West Indies)
Saturday, 28 January 2023 – 19h00 SAST
5th Tri-Series T20I: South Africa vs India (Buffalo Park, East London)
Monday, 30 January 2023 – 15h00 SAST
6th Tri-Series T20I: West Indies vs India (Buffalo Park, East London)
Thursday, 02 February 2023 – 15h00 SAST
Tri-Series Final: South Africa vs India (Buffalo Park, East London)