Sydney Sixers and Titans are due to clash in the second semi-final at centurion on Friday, October 25, to decide who will meet Highveld Lions who are already in the final thanks to a 22-run win over Delhi daredevils in the first semi-final.
Titans will seek to underscore their home advantage on a wicket that is likely to be bowler friendly; the better batting team on the night should win it.
Watson’s departure is a shot in the arm for Titans who will still need to contend Michael Lumb’s explosive potential at the top of the Sydney Sixers order and skipper Haddin could choose to go up the order to partner Lumb in the other opening slot, in which case, Peter Nevill could find himself out of the playing eleven. The Australian outfit will also look to the likes of Steven smith and Moises Henriques to shore up the middle order. Dominic Thornely’s all-round talent could prove key and he could be a back up bowler though the team will rely primarily on his batting ability. Nathan McCullum and Steve O’Keefe can also bat a bit and could give the innings the final thrust in the slog overs.
Sixers have a great bowling attack – with as many as four seamers and spinners each — and the likes of Cummins, Starc and Hazelwood have been performing consistently well. Starc in particular will be licking his lips in anticipation as the Centurion wicket will give him bounce and swing assistance.
Henry David and Jacques Rudolph at the top of the Titans’ batting order will be a reassuring sight for the team as they are both familiar with conditions at Centurion. Van Jaarsveld at number three is also experienced and these three players will need to click so as to allow the likes of Behardien and De Villiers (who could possibly return in this game) to accelerate towards the end.
Van der Merwe has been the best Titans bowler on display in the contest and he could be key to his side’s success in the game on Friday. Thomas and Cornellius de Villers are both capable of extracting bounce from the wicket while Mbhalati will be an unknown factor for the Sixers’ batsmen.
Their greater variation in bowling should help Sixers neutralise Titans’ home advantage making for an intriguing battle of wits.
About the Author (Author Profile)
Jinxatious is the Chief Editor of SportingAttitude.com
An avid writer, on an eclectic range of subjects, he brings to bear editorial experience garnered with a national newspaper in South-East Asia. He also has sportscasting experience, as a cricket commentator, and his passion for sport extends beyond Cricket, to Football, Tennis, and Olympic Sports.