Sticking to the basics key in SA20 title defence for Sunrisers Eastern Cape

“We took it a game at a time and always believed in the players in our change room, and we kept things quite simple.”

While he admitted they had to work hard for it, captain Aiden Markram said the Sunrisers Eastern Cape had managed to successfully defend their SA20 title by keeping things simple in the latter stages of a hard-fought campaign.

Batting first in the final against Durban’s Super Giants in Cape Town on Saturday, the defending champions racked up 204/4 in their 20 overs, thanks to a solid all-round contribution from their top order.

In response, all-rounder Marco Jansen took 5/30 as the Super Giants were bundled out for just 115 runs with three overs left in their innings, with the Sunrisers wrapping up a convincing 89-run victory to retain their crown.

Strong second half

The Eastern Cape side ran rampant in the second half of the season, winning their last six matches on the trot, and Markram felt they had got the best out of them themselves by sticking to the basics and not looking too far ahead.

“We took it a game at a time and always believed in the players in our change room, and we kept things quite simple,” the skipper said.

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“Out on the field you fight like crazy to scrap for every little ball, save every run, dive for every catch, commit to every ball as a bowler, and after that it’s just cricket at the end of the day,

“So that’s the sort of space we were in. But there were fantastic teams in this competition with a great standard of cricket, and you had to be at your best.”

Having performed consistently well throughout the competition, Super Giants coach Lance Klusener admitted his team were frustrated after stumbling at the final hurdle, but he conceded that they were outplayed in the trophy contest.

“I thought they (Sunrisers) played really well with their scoops and moved the ball really well,” Klusener said.

“On another day those can go wrong, so it’s high-risk cricket, but I thought they executed really well, which we didn’t. In a final you need to pitch up and execute, so all credit to them.

“It was high risk, but they’ve got a couple of batters who played really well, so well done to them.”