“We will decide which team is the best in the conditions,” he said. But Ontong also reiterated the importance of maintaining the winning culture following three consecutive wins in their first three domestic 50-over matches.
There might be one change to the starting line-up for the match against the Chevrolet Knights at Newlands on Wednesday. The explosive 26-year old opening batsman Richard Levi, who missed the match against the bizhub Highveld Lions due to a neck injury, is ready to rock ‘n roll.
He had some throw-downs and a batting session in the Newlands net on Tuesday as part of a fitness test and passed it. It was pleasing to Shane Jabaar, the Cobras physiotherapist, who was working non-stop since Saturday to improve Levi’s condition.
Ontong said on Tuesdayif conditions at Newlands are seam-bowler friendly, an extra fast bowler might be included at the expense of a spinner.
It really is an idealistic option. But will the management team make such a call?
SA Engelbrecht has been splendid as off-spinner and captured the wickets of two senior in-form stroke-makers, Neil McKenzie and Jean Symes, cheaply on Sunday.
Robin Peterson is a match-winner and has removed eight batsmen in three Momentum One Day matches this season.
Both Engelbrecht and Peterson are also good middle-order batsmen.
Rory Kleinveldt and Mthokozisi Shezi bowled well without much luck in the match on Sunday against the Lions.
Shaheen Khan has not been at his best so far, but finished with 4-38 in the first match against the Knights in Kimberley.
“We will have to be on our A-game to beat the Knights. They are dangerous opponents,” said Ontong.
The Knights feature several top-order batsmen who can get the innings off to a flyer.
Ultimately, the one area in which the Knights will have to improve significantly this season in the shortened format is their bowling. They conceded 367 runs against the Dolphins recently, and the Cobras also romped to an easy 7-wicket win against them.
Andrew Puttick, Ontong, Stiaan van Zyl and even Levi can enthral the crowd with their boundary-hitting capacity, and therefore the unbeaten Cobras are expected to continue their run on Wednesday.