Kgomotso Rapoo has been named as the new captain of the DP World Lions women’s cricket team for the coming season and watts-full of energy is what the all-rounder will bring to the side.
Although she is just 21 years old, Rapoo has already marked herself out as one of the powerhouses within the Lions team with her cunning leg-spin and aggressive batting.
The feisty Rapoo is clearly someone who backs her ability and is determined to have fun out on the field at the same time; but there is a very clear sense that she means business every time she steps on the field. That competitive spirit and positivity makes the Soweto Cricket Club product an inspirational team-mate.
DP World Lions coach Shaun Pretorius says he made Rapoo captain, replacing retired stalwart Yolani Fourie, at such a tender age because of the uplifting effect she has on the squad as a whole.
“Kgomotso is a great team player. Captains normally lead from the front, but she makes sure her team is sorted in all avenues before thinking about herself. Kgomotso is committed, dedicated, passionate about the game and just a great human being. She has got great leadership abilities,” Pretorius said.
Rapoo is grateful for the backing of her team, coach and the DP World Lions set-up.
“I’m very excited to lead the team in the new season, even though I am a youngster. It’s good that the team has vouched for me and I feel I am backed 100%,” Rapoo said at the wonderful DP World Lions season launch recently.
“My focus as captain will be on making sure we maintain the standards set and we definitely want to defend our CSA T20 title. It’s a great start that women’s cricket is now professional, but now we need to stay humble and maintain if not add to our standards of performance. We already know where we are heading to and what we need to do, so now it’s just a matter of focusing on that. We are on the right path, we know what we want in terms of performance and we must just be honest about how we play,” Rapoo said.
Helping Rapoo in her leadership role will be some of South Africa’s greatest cricketers in Shabnim Ismail and Chloe Tryon, a duo that will bring world-class ability and the kind of experience that is not on sale anywhere. Another big signing for the DP World Lions has been Proteas wicketkeeper Sinalo Jafta, another larger-than-life cricketer who will bring inspiration in the changeroom and certainly add to the brand.
With the national team going into a new era following the retirement from international cricket of Ismail and a couple of other superstars, Rapoo will go into the new season with one eye on her individual goals. A Proteas debut is surely not out of reach for this highly-promising all-rounder.
But she knows her personal ambitions go hand-in-hand with the main goal of making sure the DP World Lions keep winning.
“My aim is to play for South Africa, but you won’t even get known by the national selectors if you’re not playing for a winning team,” Rapoo said matter-of-factly.
The DP World Lions kick off their season on Saturday, September 30, with a one-day match against the ITEC Knights at the DP World Wanderers Stadium.