Tony de Zorzi says he is looking forward to the prospect of playing for Northerns in the Africa T20 Cup, starting on Thursday 25 August.
Call him a 19-year old multi-talented sportsman, one that can quickly establish himself as a Multiply Titans stalwart and who can, with age, mature into a future skipper for the franchise.
And if you look at Tony de Zorzi’s first-class average of 57.28, including two centuries, you realize he is a man possibly destined for greater things beyond the Titans.
One thing very obvious when you interview him, is that he is firmly grounded. The quotes reflect a certain humbleness about his prowess.
When asked if he was in the running to represent Gauteng at school-boy level, he said he was one of two number 10’s to wear the provincial jersey but because of a South African Under 19 cricket tour, he was not available.
“But I think the flyhalf of Monas (Monument High School) was much quicker than me and would have got the nod in any case,” he added.
A former South African Under 19 Captain, De Zorzi said he benefited from the coaching of Ryan Cook, Lawrence Mahatlane and Kruger van Wyk.
“They definitely helped to develop my awareness of the game,” he added.
During the off-season, De Zorzi has worked under the expertize of Mark Boucher, the Multiply Titans’ coach, and Van Wyk, the Tuks mentor, to extend his range of shot-making.
“Not all of us can be an AB de Villiers and be a 360-degree player. You have to be realistic,” he added.
But he also realized in the off-season that if he can add to his choice of shots, it will assist his growth to full maturity.
De Zorzi represented the Titans in the triumphant Momentum One Day Cup campaign last season.
“I think what I learned about playing for the Titans is that there is still a gap (between semi-professional and professional level), but one of the greatest aspects is the ability to strengthen the inner belief that you can play and perform at franchise level,” he said
De Zorzi’s first call of duty in the new season is the Africa T20 Cup. Northerns will get their campaign underway on 1 September against North West.
“I’m excited to be part of Africa T20 Cup - It is important for me to kick-off my season with runs under the belt,” said de Zorzi.
De Zorzi has a List A-average that doesn’t do his average justice. Yet, the off-season and the assistance of Boucher and Van Wyk might just bring the best out of him, and endear him to a growing legion of fans.