Newly appointed captain of the Six Gun Grill Western Province Wayne Parnell said that the team will not take anyone lightly as they prepare for the 2021/2022 CSA T20 KO tournament.
Speaking at a virtual press conference on Wednesday, 22 September 2021 with interim head coach, Faiek Davids, Parnell commented on the competitive nature of the T20 format.
“With T20 cricket, no-one is an underdog. So even if it is a so-called ‘smaller union’, I think when the game is shorter it literally takes one guy to come up on a particular day to win the game for his team. We’re not taking anyone lightly and also having looked through the squads, I think there are some decent names – even in the second division unions – guys who have played franchise cricket before.”
The experienced fast bowler is not fazed by the responsibility that comes with captaincy because, in the past, he has seen himself as a figurehead in the teams he has played in.
“Even though I haven’t had the official title, I’ve always seen myself as a leader within the squad,” Parnell said.
“I don’t want to tell people what to do. You want to give people the freedom to grow at their own pace. I think my role, having played all around the world; having played with some of the best players, is about trying to give little nuggets here and there,” he said.
The South African international added that he wants his team-mates to take responsibility for their own games and his leadership style will not be based on imposing himself, but assisting his team.
“I want people to just have freedom to express themselves and I think we want to get to a level where everyone is enjoying their cricket again,” he added.
Davids revealed his leadership philosophy, saying that he is a calm and collected person and players will be able to feed off that. The acting head coach also wants to get the best out of his players while instilling the mind-set of always playing to win.
Province were dealt harsh blows recently when big players such as Hashim Amla and Vernon Philander withdrew from the squad. Philander, who was initially going to captain the side for the upcoming season, accepted an offer from Pakistan to be their bowling coach for the T20 world Cup while Amla made the decision to withdraw from the 2021/22 campaign based on where he currently is in his career and with a view to his future endeavours.
Davids said not having the experience of Philander and Amla is not ideal, but it presents more opportunities for the young players to step up and make those positions their own.
Fans of the Six Gun Grill Western Province can look forward to an action-packed weekend. The Provincial side will be looking to play an exciting brand of T20 cricket when they start their campaign against the Imperial Lions at the Diamond Oval in Kimberley on Friday, 24 September 2021.
Six Gun Grill WP Squad for the 2021/2022 CSA T20 KO:
Wayne Parnell (Captain), Kyle Verreynne (Vice-Captain), Aviwe Mgijima, Basheer Walters, Beuran Hendricks, Daniel Smith, Jonathan Bird, Jordan Woolf, Kyle Simmonds, Mihlali Mpongwana, Nandre Burger, Tony De Zorzi, Tshepo Moreki, Yves Kamanzi, Zubayr Hamza
Acting head coach: Faiek Davids
Interim assistant coach: Rory Kleinveldt
Story by Junaid Benjamin