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SUPER KINGS' DEN > News > SA 20 League > How Joburg Super Kings Still Qualify for Semi-finals of the SA20? 
Joburg Super Kings

How Joburg Super Kings Still Qualify for Semi-finals of the SA20? 

“Tough roads lead to beautiful destinations.”

The equation for qualifying is as simple as ABC: win the next five games and secure a spot in the playoffs. However, it is easier said than done. The Joburg Super Kings made a shocking start to the season, losing three of their first five games, with their first match being rained out. However, we rediscovered our groove in the previous game, a resounding victory against the Capitals. After five matches, our squad has finally found its best XI; the only way to maintain our form and play regularly is to win matches. Four of our last five matches will be against clubs that are ahead of us, but past records and stats are just statistics and have no bearing on the future. Today, let us realistically delve into the possibilities of our qualifications.

Our Next Match against Royals

To make matters even more difficult, we would be playing against the Royals at our home field, Wanderers. The David Miller-led side has won four of their first five matches, contrasting ours. It is critical to remember that one of their four earlier victories came against us when they strangled our squad for a measly 145 and hunted them down in 16 overs to boost their net run rate.

The Royals have relied on outstanding performances from players like Jason Roy, Jos Buttler, David Millers, and Lungi Ngidi. They play well in practically every game, assuring a no-contest, and all of their victories have been decisive. Taking them on would be no simple chore, but one thing the royals haven’t experienced this season is being challenged. If we could apply pressure by limiting their top order and leveraging our spin bowling ability, a window of opportunity may arise. Overall, we really need our two most seasoned openers to fire.

How can JSK overcome their Dreadful Start?

We cannot undo anything, but we can make apologies. Let’s evaluate our remaining matchups, aside from today’s game versus the Royals. 

V Pretoria Capitals, Saturday, 27th Jan, Away.

We could only go into this game with confidence since they are the only team behind us and had given us impetus. They are not formidable opponents in comparison to others as they are misfiring in many departments, with key players underperforming. The only edge they’d have is that they’d be playing in front of their home crowd. The Capitals rely heavily on their opening combination of Will Jacks and Phil Salt, which would be detrimental given their weak bowling. 

V MICT, Monday, 29th Jan, Away.

The derby may appear to be deadly, but in truth, the MICT has been quietly disintegrating, having already slid to fourth. Witnessing the decline of the franchise is one of the finest pleasures for a Super Kings fan, while contributing to an integral component of that downfall is the cherry on top. MICT has been plagued by a dry period as they sit fourth in the league and within touching distance. They are coming off two consecutive defeats and have struggled with their death bowling. Sam Curran has been disappointing the side down with the ball, and teams this season have leaned heavily on their openers, while MICT’s middle order has been shambolic. The derby versus the MICT will not be as difficult as it may appear since we are now well-rounded, and if we pack their openers early we can expect a quick finish to the game.

V Sunrisers Eastern Cape, Wednesday, 31st Jan, Home. 

Eastern Cape has been flying high, posing a danger to our qualifying hopes. Led by Aiden Markram, they have discovered different match winners in each game and have completely broken the chains of a disappointing start. Following a no-result and a loss, they have won three in a row and are comfortably ranked second. The reigning champions are on the hunt to retain their title, and fortunately for us, we have nothing to lose and a home audience to celebrate. They have easy games coming up, and in order to overcome them, we must leverage our expertise, as the majority of their core consists of youngsters. The experience of Imran Tahir, Moeen Ali and David Wiese with the ball would be imperative.

V Durban Super Giants, Saturday, 3rd Feb, Home. 

The toughest game is going to be against the Super Giants. They are without a doubt the most deserving team this season, as well as one of the most complete, and overcoming them would be a tough ask. We could rely on their late-season tiredness and the likelihood of them resting before the playoffs since they would have essentially qualified. JSK have identified their strongest XI and with our players firing, we will be playing with our best squad if there is a window for qualifying but the toughest matches demand the toughest mentality. 

With 5 victories out of 5, it is not impossible, but losing one game would not entirely terminate our season. However, we will lose grip of our qualifying place as we become increasingly reliant on other teams losing. Since the league only has six clubs, and only two are eligible for being eliminated, MICT’s streak of bad games might pave the way for us. The philosophy is to take each game as it comes, and we will undoubtedly make the playoffs if we stick to the basics. Cheers, all good! 

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