Paarl Rocks v Jozi Stars
Friday 22 November 15.30
TV: live on BT Sport 3
James Vince arrived to bolster Paarl Rocks' batting against Tshwane Spartans on Sunday. His timing was good in every sense after striking 86 from 53 balls. He propelled his team to an impressive 186 and gave them excellent balance in the XI.
Alas, it wasn't enough for victory. The Rocks bowlers went missing in action as Spartans romped home by eight wickets with five balls to spare. It was a black mark against their name as they failed to make use of a significant toss bias.
The performance of Tabraiz Shamsi will be of chief concern. He went for more than 10 an over. Shamsi is supposed to be their x-factor bowler but he needs to be tighter. Isuru Udana, the left-armer, will also have to buck up. They also need JP Duminy to return from injury to give them the extra batting option but he seems a way off yet.
Probable XI Davids, Delport, du Plessis, Vince, Pretorius, Mosehle, Udana, Viljoen, Mungroo, Shamsi, Fortuin
Looking for improvement
The Stars have played four and lost four. Another defeat here will end their miniscule chances of making the play-offs. Last time out they were hammered by Nelson Mandela Bay Giants by nine wickets.
That was their worst performance of the campaign, managing only 108 batting first. And that's saying something because Cape Town Blitz had razed their batting for 126.
It's a mystery. We expect them to be competitive with the bat and profligate with the ball, granted (high on sometimes wild pacers). But why are the defending champions so hopeless when they can call on talent like Reeza Hendricks, Temba Bavuma and Rassie van der Dussen?
Chris Gayle continues to have a miserable time of it and the 39-year-old is entering busted flush territory. It's four failures in a row. Following a tough Caribbean Premier League campaign, Gayle may now only be a one innings a season man.
Possible XI Gayle, Hendricks, Bavuma, Van der Dussen, Qeshile, Hendricks, Harmer, Coetzee, Rabada, Olivier, Phangiso
Batting first a must
Before Paarl batted against Spartans, only 30% of chasers had won in T20 at Boland Park. More than 160 had been defended 100% of the time. So with such a whopping total on board, Paarl should be worried. More than 150 has been chased once. The average score is 162.
Now or never for Stars
We're looking for at least [2.0] Jozi Stars with the toss in their favour for this one. If they do bat first, it will be a great test of their smarts. Have they worked out that a score of 160 should be enough?
It is possible that Jozi's problem has been a desperation to get on with it, instead of striking with more sensitivity. Or maybe we're being kind. Either way, this is a significant moment for them. Another defeat and their campaign could well disintegrate into farce.
If they can post a mean score, their bowling has potency. There's Kagiso Rabada for a start. And Duanne Olivier.
Get it ready Rabada
There's an edge for punters on top Jozi bowler. Rabada is rated at 5/2 by Sportsbook (implied probability 28.6). Our database has him busting over 30%. There is competition. Raw quick Coetzee could be the next big thing and he is seriously fast. Olivier is also potent. Those two are both rated 7/2.
Gayle has two scores of more than 30 in his last 16. Sportsbook rate him at 5/6 for under 22.5. If you had shorted him at that quote in his 41 franchise innings this year, you would have won 24 times.