Thieves strike at the Mangaung Oval

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The Mangaung Oval PHOTO: JOHAN PRETORIUS

The VKB Knights crunch T20 Challenge match against the Dolphins has been moved to an earlier time.

The clash at the Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein was scheduled to be an evening game starting at 18:00.

Due unforeseen circumstances the match has been moved to 14:00 on Friday afternoon.

On Wednesday evening thieves struck and stole chokes in the floodlight pylons.

This chokes are needed to operate the floodlights.

Over a hundred of these chokes were stolen and each one costs approximately R2500. There are also only 30 of these chokes available in the country.

The case has been opened at the police and the matter is under investigation.

Following a three wicket loss to the Titans last week Friday and a 42 run defeat to the Warriors on Sunday the Knights need a victory to keep their play-off chances alive.

The fact that the match isn’t being played under lights anymore will change the dynamics of the game.

The Knights skipper, Theunis de Bruyn, who will be making his return from injury says the change in time will definitely change things.

“It makes a difference, the conditions change a bit at night,” De Bruyn told Courant.

“The ball skids a bit more at night, so you’ll probably look to bat second with the ball coming on more.

“Past results here indicated that most of the time it’s the team batting first that wins most of the time, so it definitely changes things.

“We’ll see tomorrow what happens and how the wicket looks, but we just want to play and put in a good performance.”

This could make winning the toss even more important, however, De Bruyn downplayed the flip of the coin somewhat.

“If your skill is better as batting unit and a bowling unit in both departs you are going to end up on top in anyway.

“Results are there for a reason and the past is there for a reason and if it says this is how it goes there you’ve got to go with it.”

The match is also the Knights last game at the Mangaung Oval in the competition, with the rest of their matches being played in Kimberley.

The first of these will be on Sunday when they host the Titans at the Diamond Oval.

Friday afternoon’s important T20 match between the Knights and the Dolphins at the Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein starts at 14:00. – MORGAN PIEK