Titans assistant coach Geoffrey Toyana happy as Quinton de Kock returns: 'He looks in good shape'

Titans assistant coach Geoffrey Toyana described his relationship with former Proteas captain Quinton de De Kock as that of ‘father and son’.
Titans assistant coach Geoffrey Toyana described his relationship with former Proteas captain Quinton de De Kock as that of ‘father and son’.
Image: GALLO IMAGES

Titans assistant coach Geoffrey Toyana says former Proteas captain Quinton de Kock has returned to training rejuvenated after his “mental health break”.

De Kock‚ who took time off when the Proteas returned from Pakistan last month‚ returned to training this week and will play his first match when the Titans take on the Lions in the CSA 4-Day Series match starting from Tuesday.

“He is looking in good shape. He  needed time to rest and recharge the batteries. He is back and is in good physical condition‚” said Toyana‚ who mentored and gave a teenage De Kock his break at franchise level at the Lions in 2009.

“He is playing against the Lions this week and he is with the rest of the team in camp ahead of our match. I am happy to see him and he is happy to see his ‘father’. He needs to focus on the next four days of cricket against the Lions.”

Toyana described his relationship with De Kock as that of “father and son”.

De Kock’s return to action is a timely boost for the Titans as he will add more depth to their batting as they look for a win that will see them secure a place in the 4-Day Series final.

He joins Proteas team-mates Dean Elgar‚ Aiden Markram‚ Tabraiz Shamsi and Heinrich Klaasen and other key players such as Grant Thompson‚ Thando Ntini‚ Lizaad Williams‚ Neil Brand and Sibonelo Makhanya.

Markram‚ who scored his maiden double ton last week against the Knights‚ said he is relishing the prospect of playing against the Lions, who also have a number of Proteas players in their team.

“I’m really looking forward to the match. The Lions are playing good cricket at the moment and we are playing at the Wanderers. I am bracing myself for a meeting of minds with Temba Bavuma‚ Kagiso Rabada‚ Rassie van der Dussen and Beuran Hendricks.”

Titans coach Mandla Mashimbyi said they must beat the Lions in their own backyard if they want to play in the final.

“We want to go all the way‚ we want to go to the finals. I guess it’s a case of if you want to  get there‚ you’ve got to beat the best. The Lions are one of the best at the moment‚ so we coach Mandela Mashimbyi said.


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