Dwaine Pretorius enhanced his claim to higher honours by running up a superb 118 to help the Highveld Lions to 411-7 against the Titans.
Pretorius, who harbours credible ambitions of getting a national call-up, hauled his team from a precarious 156-5 to 264-6 in partnership with Nicky van den Bergh (69) in Centurion on Thursday.
Nevertheless, the Titans’ maintained their dominance of the race to the Sunfoil title. They began this penultimate round of matches with a lead of almost 12 runs over the Knights, and more than 17 over the Lions.
They would have noted with some satisfaction the Knights being bowled out for 128 by the lowly Warriors, gaining no batting points, while themselves gaining three bowling points to counter the Lions’ 6.52 bonus from a fighting batting performance.
Marchant de Lange was in good form, breaking partnerships at crucial times to end with 3-94, aided by the unorthodox left-arm spin of Tabraiz Shamsi (3-100).
The Knights are still in with a chance of winning their match in Kimberley, for after being dismissed for 128, they reduced the Warriors to 93-5 at the close. But they need bonus points, and a woeful batting performance, in which only three players reached double figures, led by Rudi Second’s 41 and Werner Coetsee’s 33, did not help.
The Warriors, without a win in this series, owe their success to Jerry Nqolo’s medium-paced 4-11 wiping out the tail and off-spinner Simon Harmer’s 3-25.
In Cape Town, Wayne Parnell hit the heights with a seven-wicket haul as the the Cape Cobras bowled out the Dolphins for 183.
In a match which is relevent only for mid-table positioning, Parnell went on the rampage. At one stage he had 6-28 off 12 overs before ending with 7-51 off 15. Those figures were damaged a brave tail-end stand by Craig Alexander, who registered his first first-class fifty, slamming 51 off 35 balls with seven fours and three sixes until he was snared by Dane Piedt’s spin.
Higher up, only Vaughn van Jaarsveld offered any resistance, scoring 54 off 85 balls (10×4).
Vernon Philander returned to franchise action with 1-20 off 11. At the close, the Cobras were 67-2.