East London (South Africa), Jan 28 (IANS) Experienced South Africa all-rounder Marizanne Kapp believes victories in upcoming matches against India in the ongoing Women’s T20I Tri-Series in East London will be a ‘major boost’ for her team ahead of next month’s ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023.
South Africa will wrap up the round-robin phase of the Tri-Series with the match against India set to happen late on Saturday night, serving as a precursor to the final of the three-team event scheduled to happen between the two teams on February 2.
“I think it’ll be very important for us as a team. We’ve tried a few combinations, looked at a few players and we know this is not the easiest of wickets. So, if we can beat a team like India on these wickets, it’ll be a massive boost for us as a team. You want that bit of momentum when you go into a T20 World Cup,” said Marizanne ahead of the match.
In the first game of the Tri-Series, South Africa went down to India by 27 runs before emphatically bouncing back to overpower the West Indies in their subsequent matches, winning by 44 runs and 10 wickets respectively.
Despite achieving success against the West Indies, Marizanne, 33, remains wary of the challenges posed by India, especially by their spin attack led by off-spin all-rounder Deepti Sharma.
“In these conditions you have to be positive. The first few games we probably battered within ourselves a bit because of these conditions that don’t really suit us. It was and has been tough out there, I’m not going to lie.”
“Usually, I’m someone that prefers spin and I quite enjoy facing spin, but it’s really been a challenge on these wickets. So, if we can go out there and just be positive and clear with our plans, it should do us good.”
On an individual front, Marizanne has been taking responsibility with both bat and ball after being asked to slot in at three in the batting order while continuing to open the bowling for South Africa.
With the bat, she produced a score of 22 against India before recording her second T20I half-century with a crucial 52 in the first outing against the West Indies. Although she has only bagged one wicket with her right-arm medium deliveries, (1/30 against India), Marizanne has continued to set the tone up front for the South African seam attack.
“It’s been a good challenge for me. The past two years, I’ve really enjoyed batting again, whether it’s ODI cricket or T20 cricket. I back myself again, it’s not always been easy on these wickets, but I know we are not always going to play on wickets like these and then I can express myself a bit better.”
“It’s been a good challenge. It’s sometimes tough, especially with the heat out here in East London, and it’s a ground where you have to run most of your runs. It’s been a challenge, but it’s been a good challenge and I feel like as a senior player, I can bring a lot of stability in that number three role for my team,” she concluded.