A determined rearguard action by Ayabulela Gqamane put the Warriors into a strong position against the Cobras in Newlands.
The hosts may have fancied their chances when their 19-year-old rookie Michael Cohen completed his first franchise five-for, in just his second match, to put the Warriors at a precarious 207-7.
But Yaseen Vallie was still at the crease, having just completed his 12th first-class hundred off 138 balls, when Gqamane came in. They put on 94 before Vallie, then on 150 off 211 balls, was the eighth wicket to fall with the score on 311. Gqamane continued to hold the fort until, on 61 off 58 balls (7×4, 1×6), he became Lizaad Williams’ fourth victim with the total a more robust 347.
When bad light stopped play, the Cobras were 97-2, with Pieter Malan (48) and Justin Ontong (12) at the crease.
In Potchefstroom, the Knights were fighting back at 154-3 after the Highveld Lions ran up 464 in their first innings.
The hosts owed their total principally to Reeza Hendricks’ 108 on day one and Rassie van der Dussen’s 114, but there were useful contributions lower down from Mangaliso Mosehle (35) and Hardus Viljoen (29). They may have had more, but Wiaan Mulder, on 18 overnight, was pulled out to join the Proteas for their ODI match against Bangladesh.
The Knights got off to a good start with an opening stand of 113 between Luthando Mnyanda (60) and Grant Mokoena (52), but two wickets from left-arm spinners Bjorn Fortuin and one from off-break bowler Wihan Lubbe undermined their efforts.
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