However, the BCX rider knows he will have a task on his hands when he sets out to dethrone defending champion Dylan Rebello.
The pair, both in fine form, proved to be evenly matched in the final round of the Western Cape TrailSeeker Series on the Hemel en Aarde trails near Hermanus on Saturday.
On that occasion, Kruger won the 62km race a mere 30 seconds ahead of the Imbuko Wines rider.
Appearing at the Tour de Plett for the first time, Kruger said he knew he would be up against some tough competition, singling out Rebello.
“I know Dylan will be there and I know he’ll be looking to defend his title. He’s in quite good form so he’s going to be a difficult man to beat.”
Kruger was out injured after crashing heavily in the Knysna Cycle Tour road race in July and breaking his collarbone and said he was looking forward to once again riding the region’s trails.
“The Knysna Cycle Tour was basically the only racing I’ve done on the mountain bike around Plett, but my legs have been quite good these last couple of weeks so I’ll definitely try and go for a win.”
After his victories at the TrailSeeker and Fedhealth MTB Challenge event in the last two months, Kruger said he felt he stood a good chance of continuing his winning run.
Kruger said he called on friend Hanco Kachelhoffer, who finished third last year, for advice on what to expect in the 87km race between Wittedrift High School and Central Beach in Plettenberg Bay.
He said the support from teammate Walyon Woolcock, who was crowned the Western Cape TrailSeeker champion after finishing fifth in Hermanus, meant they would have “a numbers game to play”.
“It will be nice with Waylon riding; we’ll be able to work together and try get a win for the team.”