Mzansi Super League

ROCKS, GIANTS STAYING FOCUSSED ON WINNING

ROCKS, GIANTS STAYING FOCUSSED ON WINNING

Paarl Rocks and Nelson Mandela Bay Giants face-off in another pre-play-off clash in the Mzansi Super League on Wednesday with both sides knowing that they have everything at stake at Eurolux Boland Park..

The two are presently placed fourth (17 points) and third (21) respectively on the log standings ahead of their final regular-season clash.

But Tshwane Spartans (16) can pip them both if they win both their remaining games with a bonus point – they play the Jozi Stars (24) later on Tuesday and then the Durban Heat (10) on Wednesday – although that is hardly on the minds of both teams.

If the Stars win their game in Johannesburg, it will mean the Rocks-Giants encounter is a straight shoot-out for third spot, the final qualification spot for the play-offs.

Should the Spartans win, it will leave both of their prospects hinging on what happens in the Tshwane’s side final outing against the Heat at Centurion in the late game on Wednesday

So, both teams in the Paarl clash are looking to remain focused on the job at hand for them, which is to win the game against each other.

“It’s obviously a knockout game,” says Rocks coach Adrian Birrell. “We need a win to start and then there’s obviously the match on Tuesday evening that will have a bearing on our game.

“But we know the maths and we have to obviously win our game. There’s no chance if we don’t win.”

The Paarl boss wants his players to do what they do best.  “First and foremost is to prepare for the match and make sure we’re up for it tomorrow,” he explained. “That’s it. If we pitch up and perform how I know we can, we’ll have every chance of progressing.”

Sizing up the Giants, Birrell believes they are very similar to his Rocks team. “They’re a fantastic team,” he stated. “Like us they’ve blown hot and cold. They’ve had some disappointing losses, so we’re very much in the same boat as them.

“They went out very strong, won their first few matches and got themselves into a good position.

“But now they are struggling for that spot, just like we are. But we are evenly matched, with match-winners on either side, so it’s going to be a fabulous match. Hopefully we come out on the right side of it.”

Meanwhile, Giants captain Jon-Jon Smuts is hoping they can peak at the right time as the knock-out stages loom. “We have not played our best cricket yet, but we’re still in a good position,” he added.

“Rain hasn’t helped us either. But for us, we have to win on Wednesday against Paarl.”

The latest Mzansi Super League table (before the Jozi Stars v Tshwane Spartans match on Tuesday):

 

P

W

L

NR

Bonus

Pts

Net RR

Cape Town Blitz

10

6

3

1

4

30

0,94

Jozi Stars

9

5

4

0

4

24

0,87

NMB Giants

9

4

3

2

1

21

-0,22

Paarl Rocks

9

4

5

0

1

17

-0,56

Tshwane Spartans

8

4

4

0

0

16

-0,60

Durban Heat

9

2

6

1

0

10

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