A fourth career century by Sarel Erwee helped take the Dolphins further clear at the top of the One-Day Cup table after they overcame the Warriors by seven wickets at the City Oval in Pietermaritzburg on Sunday.
The left-hander carried his bat for 101 (128 balls, 14 fours, 1 six), sharing in an opening 137-run stand with Grant Roelofsen that paved the way for the hosts to comfortably chase down a 238-run victory target with 24 balls to spare.
There were also two wickets each by Keshav Maharaj (2-28), Daryn Dupavillon (2-40) and Okuhle Cele (2-48) in a disciplined bowling display at the City Oval, where victory took the home side to 22 points at the summit of the table – now nine clear of the Imperial Lions in second spot.
It was another superb performance by the KwaZulu-Natal side, who have been excellent so far this season and now look certain for a semi-final spot in the weeks ahead.
Playing for the second time in the KZN Midlands this season, they had to field first after the Warriors won the toss and batted.
Sinethemba Qeshile was the standout batter for the Eastern Cape franchise as he helped lay down a strong platform with 80 off 104 balls (9 fours).
While he was there, he guided them to 172-3 in 35 overs, but things then unravelled quickly as they only managed 65 in the final 15 overs.
That too because of Lesiba Ngoepa’s 53 off 71 balls (2 fours, 1 six), with everyone else struggling.
The Warriors eventually limped to 237-9 – the Dolphins’ fine bowling hardly allowing them any room to explode at the death.
Then with Erwee at the wheel, the home side made a strong start, scoring freely to put their visitors under pressure.
Roelofsen provided the early support with 79 off 77 balls (8 fours, 3 sixes) to take their side to 137-0, with Khaya Zondo’s run-a-ball 27 not out then helping take them to the finish in a comfortable position.
Photo: Gallo Images