Warriors seek home comforts

Malibongwe Maketa,Coach of the Warriors

Malibongwe Maketa,Coach of the Warriors

Warriors coach Malibongwe Maketa is hoping that successive games at home over the weekend will kick start their Momentum One-Day Cup campaign starting with a match-up against the log-leading Hollywoodbets Dolphins at St Georges Park in Port Elizabeth on Friday.

The Eastern Cape side are also scheduled to host the second-placed Multiply Titans in East London on Sunday – meaning a tough weekend lays ahead.

The Warriors lost their first two matches of the campaign when they went down to the bizhub Highveld Lions and then the BuildNat Cape Cobras, before crushing the VKB Knights in their last game.

Only one of those matches were on their home patch and Maketa is relishing their being back in familiar surroundings this weekend.

“It’s been a tough start for us in terms of this format, but the win last week really gave us a bit of a boost and we’re encouraged by the fact that the next two games are at home,” he said.

“We always recognise the fact that we need to capitalise on home soil and win those games in any tournament you play, so we look forward to a positive weekend.”

With the Titans set to follow the Dolphins and face the Warriors on the weekend, it is going to be difficult for the hosts.

“We always take it game-by-game and for now we’re preparing solely for the Dolphins,” Maketa said. “So that’s the only thing on our minds and it being at home, makes it easier with our preparations in a familiar environment. Hopefully we can go out and deliver on the day.”

The Warriors traditionally have a strong record against the Dolphins, winning 13 out of their 22 meetings.

Maketa, however, is not reading anything into the numbers with his focus fully on how they deliver on the day.

“They’ve always been a good side and it’s no surprise that they are top,” he adds. “They have quality international players, but that will encourage us to lift our game.

“We’ll respect them, but we always enjoy the challenge of acing the sides that are right up there. Winning against them will bring us that little bit closer to the top sides on the table.”