The Eliminator of the Mzansi Super League has been set and it will be the Jozi Stars that host Paarl Rocks to meet Cape Town Blitz in the finals. The inaugural year of the MSL was a very exciting one and we are sure that the tournament is going to be a staple for domestic South African cricket in the years to come.
Both the Jozi Stars and Paarl Rocks confirmed their place in the Eliminator in their last group match. The Jozi Stars ended with six wins from 10 matches while Paarl Rocks finished five wins from their 10 matches. Both the teams also played against each other twice in the Mzansi Super League group stages and won one match each.
Jozi Stars and Paarl Rocks will be eyeing that second spot in the final when they face each other in the Eliminator of the Mzansi Super League 2018. Scheduled to be played on December 14, the match will be hosted by the New Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg – the home ground of the Stars. Live action is scheduled to start at 10:30PM local time.
Where to Watch/Live Streaming
TV channels: Sony Six, Sky Sports Cricket, OSN Sports Cricket HD, Ten Sports, Channel 9
Live Streaming: SonyLIV, Bet365, Sky Go, OSN Play, SuperSport Live
Squad: Dane Vilas (captain), Chris Gayle, Kagiso Rabada, Rassie van der Dussen, Dan Christian, Beuran Hendricks, Reeza Hendricks, Dwaine Pretorius, Eddie Leie, Pite van Biljon, Duanne Olivier, Ryan Rickelton, Sinethemba Qeshile, Simon Harmer, Calvin Savage, Alfred Mothoa, Nono Pongolo.
Coach: Enoch Nkwe
Squad: Faf du Plessis (captain), Tabraiz Shamsi, Aiden Markram, Dwayne Bravo, Dane Paterson, Mangaliso Mosehle, Bjorn Fortuin, Vaughn van Jaarsveld, Grant Thomson, Paul Stirling, Tshepo Moreki, Henry Davids, Cameron Delport, Eathan Bosch, Patrick Kruger, Kerwin Mungroo.
Coach: Adrian Birrell
Head to Head
Both the teams have won once each in the two matches they have played against each other earlier in the tournament. While Jozi Stars registered a crushing 60-run win in the first of those encounters at the Boland Park, it was Paarl Rocks who emerged victorious by six wickets in the round 2 clash at Johannesburg. When the two sides locked horns last Sunday, the Stars scored 170/6 in their 20 overs after being asked to bat first. The Rocks, in reply, got off to a shaky start before Faf du Plessis and Grant Thomson steered them to victory in the end.
Jozi Stars are arguably the form team in the entire competition coming into this Eliminator with five wins from their last six matches so confidence is sky high especially given some of the massive totals they have been smashing.
- Having scored more than 200 on three occasions – something only two other teams have managed to do once – their confidence with the bat is superb despite not being able to count upon Chris Gayle who has returned to the West Indies for his mother’s funeral.
- They changed their batting order by throwing Kagiso Rabada up to number four last time out as a pinch-hitter and he responded by smashing 21 from 11 balls, so they may consider switching it up again if the opportunity arises, but the starting eleven is likely to remain the same for this game match.
- Paarl Rocks have struggled for consistency throughout this tournament but they do have big match players and they produced the goods when they had to by winning their last two group stage matches against Jozi Stars and Nelson Mandela Bay Giants.
- The bowlers were key in the win over the Giants as Shamsi and Bravo were in outstanding form, while a batsmen not named Du Plessis managed to contribute with a big score as Delport smashed 84 from 45 balls.
- They will need their bowling unit to be at their absolute best here against the best batting line-up in the competition, while Delport, Du Plessis, Davids and Markram really need to be at their best to keep up with the hosts.
Probable Playing 11
Reeza Hendricks, Ryan Rickelton, Rassie van der Dussen, Dane Vilas (c/wk), Petrus van Biljon, Daniel Christian, Simon Harmer, Beuran Hendricks, Duanne Olivier, Nono Pongolo, Kagiso Rabada
Cameron Delport, Henry Davids, Faf du Plessis (c), Aiden Markram, Dwayne Bravo, David Wiese, Grant Thomson, Mangaliso Mosehle (wk), Kerwin Mungroo, Dane Paterson, Tabraiz Shamsi
These two teams meet in Johannesburg having one a game apiece in their previous two meetings so far in the MSL. The Stars however made a slow start but have been the standout team in the second half of the tournament and their confidence is sky high. They are hitting some huge scores and they will be confident especially if they can bat first and get a huge total under their belts which they have done frequently so far. The Rocks have the quality to match them, but not enough of their players have produced their best as consistently as the Stars. For that reason alone, the Stars have to be favoured to make the final.