Eddie Leie finds himself in familiar and markedly warm surrounds at the Wanderers and at the Jozi Stars.
After all‚ that is where he has played most of his cricket before a recent move to Bloemfontein.
Home is where the heart is reported to be and with the Jozi Stars having a home game to open their Mzansi Super League account against the Nelson Mandela Bay Giants on Saturday‚ he seemed more than keen to re-acquaint himself with SA’s largest cricket ground.
The tournament kicks off on Friday when the Cape Town Blitz and the Tshwane Spartans clash at Newlands.
“I love the buzz here and I love home and it reminded me of the energies I had before I left here,” he said.
“I know the Johannesburg crowd appreciates you when you do well for the team‚” Leie said.
“Hopefully‚ we’re going to win some games and I’m very positive about the team. I think we’re up to some good things.”
The 31-year-old leg-spinner is starting to mark himself as a T20 specialist‚ something that is entirely understandable considering how quality leg-spin is still seen as a game breaker in the shortest format.
The jury will be out on the cricketing quality of the tournament‚ however, especially from an administrative perspective after the manner in which the tournament came to life. Leie‚ who has represented the St Lucia Zouks in the Caribbean Premier League‚ is nevertheless optimistic about the development of the tournament.
“I’ve played in the Caribbean Premier League and that has some international stars.
“When that tournament started‚ it wasn’t the best from an organisational view and even the one in Bangladesh‚ it was also the same. But I feel this league is at an international standard‚” Leie said.
“The way we travel with the buses‚ the logistics and everything, it does feel of an international standard. All we need now is for the games to start and once they do so‚ I think they’ll be alright,” he said.