A fine bowling display by the Titans helped the defending champions claim their first win this season, beating the Dolphins by an innings and 38 runs on day three.
After a strong first innings by the Titans, posting 432, the home side backed up their batting with a dominant bowling display, ending the Dolphins’ unbeaten run. Robbie Frylinck’s brace on day three prevented the Titans from running away with proceedings, as the Titans were bowled out after adding only 53 runs to their overnight total.
With a 225-run first-innings deficit, the Dolphins struggled to get themselves going putting on 11 runs before the loss of their first wicket, Imraan Khan falling to David Wiese on the first ball of the fifth over.
Daryn Smit and Sarel Erwee tried hard to get their side going, but their 39-run partnership was put to an end quickly by Malusi Siboto dismissing Smit (18) in the 20th over followed by Erwee (30) half-way through the 28th over. Future star Lungi Ngidi then bowled Senuran Muthusamy for a duck in the following over, before Siboto got his third just seven balls later.
It looked like the Dolphins were just beginning to get their innings started, when Zondo and Van Wyk put on a 50-run partnership to steady the fast fall of wickets, but their efforts were soon ended when Richards joined the party dismissing Van Wyk (22) and Andile Phehlukwayo (0) in the 52nd over.
Despite Zondo batting through the innings with a well-deserved 68, the Dolphins could not withstand the onslaught, as Ngidi picked up Frylinck (21) for his second of the day. Richards got his third wicket just five overs later with Henry Davids picking up the final wicket just a few balls after. The Titans emerged victorious by an innings 38 runs with a day left to spare.
Elsewhere, after a rain delay stopped play with the Cobras on 94-0, it was up to Omphile Ramela and Andrew Puttick to continue their fine form as they hunted down the 525-run first-innings target set by the Warriors.
Ramela and Puttick put on a 266-run partnership, showing outstanding concentration by facing 106 overs together, before Puttick was bowled by Basheeru-Deen Walters after making his 25th career century. Ramela was in fine form despite losing partners in quick succession, wonder-kid Zubayr Hamza (24) falling shortly after the wicket of Ramela’s opening partner. The 28-year-old marched past the 150-run mark as the match looked to be petering towards a draw.
Ramela fought hard to stay at the crease before stumps, but he lost his wicket on 170 after a fine piece of off-break bowling from Edward Moore. In-form Jason Smith (27), and Proteas-batsman Stiaan van Zyl (22), will proceed on day four as they try and reduced their sides’ deficit. The Cobras trailing by 151 runs with eight wickets remaining at stumps on day three.
David Miller continued to enjoy his fine debut for his new franchise, as he reached a massive 177 runs with help from Michael Erlank (102), the pair putting on the second-highest partnership (243) of the round. The Knights managed to post 572, Ayavuya Myoli picking up 4-145 to help bowl out the Knights after they creeped into a 89-run lead.
The Lions’ second innings started off on the wrong foot, losing Reeza Hendricks for a duck and Rassie van der Dussen (26) with the Lions posting 62-2 before stumps on day three. Dominic Hendricks (33) and Hardus Viljoen (2) will look to score quickly as they search for a victory with the Knights leading by 27 runs going into day four.
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