Sport / Cricket

Ken Borland
Sports Journalist
2 minute read
18 Oct 2021
3:47 pm

Harmer back to bolster star-studded Northerns in T20 Knockout Cup

Ken Borland

The quarterfinals take place on Tuesday and Wednesday in Kimberley.

Former Proteas spinner and English county cricket star Simon Harmer is back in South Africa to play for Northerns. Picture: Jacques Feeney/Getty Images

Leus du Plooy will make an emotional return to South African cricket as he turns out as the overseas pro for South-Western Districts in their CSA T20 Knockout Cup quarterfinal against Northerns in Kimberley on Tuesday.

But it is three returning full internationals for the Titans who will probably have a greater impact.

Du Plooy’s last appearance in South Africa came in April 2019 when he scored a century for Northerns against Eastern Province at St George’s Park. He then joined Derbyshire as a Kolpak player and did well enough to receive a contract until the end of next season, as well as being chosen to play in The Hundred for Welsh Fire.

But Northerns will welcome back an even bigger star of English county cricket in off-spinner Simon Harmer, as well as batsman Theunis de Bruyn and fast bowler Junior Dala.

De Bruyn has had a wretched time with injury lately and will be eager to stamp his mark on the early-season with big runs, while Dala gives the Titans a trio of fearsome fast bowlers as he joins Corbin Bosch and the in-form Okuhle Cele.

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With Dean Elgar still injured, left-arm spinner Aaron Phangiso will lead the Titans. He may be 37-years-old, but he showed in the pool stages in Bloemfontein, as he took four for 52 in his 10 overs overall, that there is no mould on his skills and he is still quite capable of keeping batsmen in the dark.

The hard-hitting Donovan Ferreira and opener Jandre Pretorius are two young guys who grew their reputations in Bloemfontein.

The Free State Knights take on Western Province in Tuesday’s other quarterfinal, while Wednesday morning’s clash between the high-flying KZN Dolphins and the aggressive Eastern Province Warriors should be fun.

The Boland Rocks play the last quarterfinal against North-West in a match that will showcase what CSA are hoping are two growth areas of the game.