Players hardly every admit that they have a score to settle against a former team and in many instances the departure was friendly.

Yet when the Knights and Titans meet in Bloemfontein on Wednesday for a Ram Slam T20 challenge clash, it’s difficult not to feel Theunis de Bruyn has a point to prove.

The stylish 25-year-old batsman’s move to the central franchise last season received a fair amount of attention, specifically because he was initially considered a big part of the Titans’ future.

However, the Centurion-based franchise’s massive depth and Cricket South Africa’s transformation requirements meant his place was uncertain.

After being initially loaned out, De Bruyn is now Knights skipper and made his international debut last season.

The right-hander has a patchy T20 record against his former team as last season’s 47 off 34 balls in Kimberley has been interspersed with scores of 5 and 3.

As a result, he’s yet to remind the Titans what they’re missing.

It won’t be De Bruyn’s focus though.

He’d merely want to use the Titans as a means of catching the national selectors’ eyes.

And there’s no better team to do it against.

De Bruyn will not only come up against two established Protea middle order batters in AB de Villiers and Farhaan Behardien but also Aiden Markram.

In fact, the battle with Markram – who didn’t even bat against the Lions last Sunday – could be fun because it’s thought those two would be competing for a spot in the national side.

Another interesting dynamic is that the Titans have batting power to make any team envious but De Bruyn, together with David Miller, will actually have to carry an iffy Knights line-up.

Given that context, another good innings like last weekend’s 78 against the Warriors could see his stock rise further.


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Publish date : 2017-11-14 12:20:25

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