The Cobras enjoyed an emphatic win over the Dolphins at Newlands, while solid batting on the fourth day of matches in the 4-Day Franchise Series ensured draws in the other two fixtures.
Cobras vs Dolphins
Dane Paterson completed his 11th career five-for as the Cape Cobras extended their advantage at top of the 4-Day Franchise Series table by securing a five-wicket win over the Dolphins on the final day of their clash in Cape Town on Thursday.
The Proteas paceman claimed six for 63 in 25.3 overs to help set up a low-scoring chase of 171, with the home side reaching their target midway through the fourth afternoon to make it four wins from four in 2018-19. They are now up to 99.86 points, over 30 points clear of the chasing pack, who all drew their round four games this past week.
It was another clinical performance by Ashwell Prince’s side, who began the final morning needing three wickets as the visitors resumed on 265 for seven.
Paterson got two of them, removing Keshav Maharaj (6) and Okuhle Cele (4), with Vernon Philander (1-49) claiming the wicket of innings top-scorer Dane Vilas for 72 (121 balls, 7 fours) – the Dolphins lasting just 4.3 overs more at Newlands.
The chase did not go entirely according to plan for the home side with Player of the Match Pieter Malan, who hit a century in the first innings, dismissed for a second-ball duck in the third over by Robbie Frylinck (1-4). Zubayr Hamza (7) also fell cheaply to leave the Cobras on 20 for two.
But Janneman Malan struck 38 to lead the recovery and, even though Maharaj claimed three for 49, Kyle Verreynne’s 46 and an unbeaten 43 from Aviwe Mgijima took the log-leaders to a comfortable victory.
Warriors vs Knights
A franchise-best 177 by captain Pite van Biljon ensured the VKB Knights managed to secure an encouraging draw after batting out the final day of their 4-Day Domestic Series encounter against the Warriors in Port Elizabeth on Thursday.
The right-hander was unbeaten at the end having batted the entire last day, facing 292 balls, which included 27 fours and five sixes, to ensure his side saved the game by reaching 366 for six when stumps were eventually drawn at St George’s Park.
Van Biljon’s effort was complemented brilliantly by Andries Gous after he completed a wonderful second franchise game by striking 92 (189 balls, 12 fours, 4 sixes) – adding to his maiden ton in the first innings.
In fact, the rookie batted with his captain for most of the day, with the pair resuming on 154 for four at the start. At that stage, the Knights were still 24 runs in arrears, but the two batsmen batted together until the lead was taken to 217.
They put on a fixture record 241 for the fifth wicket, surpassing the 236 by Ryan Bailey and Morne van Wyk, which was established in the 2010-11 season.
The stand was eventually broken by Yaseen Vallie (1-15), and even though Ryan McLaren (4) fell not long after, it was too late for the Warriors as the Central Franchise held on to secure a draw.
Lions vs Titans
Stephen Cook struck a half-century on the final day as the Jukskei derby between the Highveld Lions and Titans petered out to a tame draw in Potchefstroom on Thursday.
The veteran opener made 51 (77 balls, 8 fours) to help the hosts reach 154 for five in their second innings, a lead of 265 when the captains decided to shake hands at Senwes Park.
It ended a contest that was totally dominated by the bat as the home side initially posted 530 and the visitors replied with 419.
Day four had begun with the Lions batting on two for none and they reached 79, before the departure of Cook. First-innings centurion Wiaan Lubbe followed two overs later for a two-ball duck – both dismissed by Shaun von Berg (2-35) – before Rassie van der Dussen (17) followed to Matthew Arnold (2-22) 26 runs later.
Temba Bavuma (34) was finally taken out by Alfred Mothoa (1-28) as the match was drawn.
The result means the champion Titans have now drawn three matches out of four this season, with the other game ending in defeat last week to the Cape Cobras.
The Lions, meanwhile, remain second on the table, but now further behind the log-leading Cobras, who were again winners in the latest round of games.
Photo: Cricket South Africa