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CLT20 Staff in Centurion

We play well as a team: Kuhn

Titans wicketkeeper says his team has plenty of self-belief to take on the Sixers

The Titans trained hard and went through their training routines at the Supersport Park ahead of their semi-final clash against the Sydney Sixers. The two teams will face off in the second semi-final of the Karbonn Champions League Twenty20 2012 to be played here on October 26. The Martin van Jaarsveld-led side might not have big names in their line-up but they are an enthusiastic and well-knit bunch that takes pride in playing together. 

Speaking to the media ahead of the match, wicketkeeper-batsman Heino Kuhn said, “We play for each other. We have always been a team that likes to support each other. We are very happy with each other’s achievements and accomplishments and we will do anything to win. We like to play for each other and that is what we will do.”

Although the Titans will be playing as the away side – on paper - in their own backyard tomorrow, they still will have the benefit of playing in familiar conditions. “Playing at home is a bonus,” Kuhn remarked.

“Sixers are a very good side and they have been playing well as team, but I don’t think we see them as the best side here. We rate ourselves [high]. We believe in ourselves and we play well as a team and for us, it is just another game,” he said.

“In the Titans side we have had some very quick bowlers like Morne [Morkel], Dale [Steyn], Marchant de Lange in the recent years. So, we are comfortable with the pace attack that the Sixers have got. They are international bowlers. They are very good [but] I don’t think that it is bothering us at all,” Kuhn said while speaking about the Mitchell Starc-led pace attack pace attack, which has been instrumental in the Sixers’ wins.

The South African team, themselves have an effective and varied bowling attack with pace and spin options. Asked if that has benefited them in the competition he said, “I think we have a balanced side. Alfonso Thomas being our man, our professional bowler and has helped the guys a lot, whether it is the medium pacers or the pace bowlers. We also have Ethy Mbhalati who has been over here forever. They have both helped. Every guy who gets the opportunity to play is so happy to play and they just give everything.”

Kuhn himself has been happy to bat anywhere in the line-up as per the requirements of the team and has been referred to as the insurance policy player by coach Mathew Maynard. Speaking about being the floater in the side, he said, “The only thing I can say is that if I don’t bat at three then I know that the openers have done their job and we are doing well as a team. So for me, my not batting is good for the side. And when I got my chance in Cape Town, I didn’t quite use it. But yes, I am very happy to bat wherever the team wants me to. I am happy with that.”

When asked whether the match against Delhi Daredevils being washed out had an effect on their momentum, Kuhn replied, “We didn’t really worry about the game. We have trained hard enough and worked hard in the nets couple of days before. We would have liked to play and playing always helps a little bit with preparation, but we were okay with whatever happened. We were already through to the semis.”

Speaking about their participation in the CLT20, he mentioned, “The guys have all taken it in their stride. We don’t have a lot of national T20 players but we are all playing as a team. We have gelled well as team and I think the guys are all very excited and energetic to be involved in an international tournament like this. I think it is just a nice thing for the guys to be able to be a part of this and see if they do well and go up what they will be up against. We are all just enjoying the opportunity that we have got.”

“It’s been a nice feeling to be involved in an international tournament like this. I have had an opportunity to play in the Proteas’ side where I have played against a lot of the big names but for guys who haven’t played, I think it is an unbelievable feeling. Some of the guys have come to me and said, ‘I can’t believe I am playing against a Kevin Pietersen’ and stuff like that. I think that all are taking it in their side and enjoying every second of it,” he added.

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