The Warriors left it late to clean up the Knights’ tail and inflict a first defeat of the season on them.
The Warriors still needed four wickets going into the final session in Port Elizabeth, but it only took them five overs to end what was an otherwise resilient batting display from the visitors.
The Knights went into this match undefeated, but they were always behind in the game as they struggled to 179 in between the Warriors’ totals of 339 and 236.
It was a matter of survival on day four, and skipper Theunis de Bruyn led from the front, battling his way to 108 for his first ton as a Knights player. The next-best score however was only 31 by Rudi Second, as their opponents chipped away at them throughout the day.
Pacey 21-year-old Arich Nortje looks to be a player for the future, as he took match figures of 9-98 to earn the Man of the Match award in the 107-run victory. It was their second win of the season to go 0.4 of a point behind the Knights.
There were draws elsewhere, which was always going to be the case in Paarl between the Cobras and the Dolphins. At one point in the match the Cobras were in all kinds of problems at 22-4 in response to the Dolphins’ 478, but the Cape-based side rallied to 447 all out, before time was called on proceedings on Sunday with the Dolphins on 207-4.
Khaya Zondo was in supreme form yet again to go second in the run-scoring charts with 157 and 57 not out in the match, but the plaudits went to Cobras captain Justin Ontong, who notched up his first-ever double century.
A draw was always going to be the likely outcome in Potchefstroom too, as day three was washed out between the Titans and the Lions.
The Lions will be the happier of the two after they were bowled for 206. The Titans however took the strange option of deciding to carry on batting on day four after being 327-6 overnight. Perhaps the bonus batting points took priority, but it effectively ruled out the contest as they declared on 431-6 (Henry Davids 150 not out), leaving the Lions with 56 overs to bat out the rest of the day. They finished on 187-2.
The Titans hold a narrow lead at the top going into the mid-season Sunfoil break, as they look to secure back-to-back titles. The winless Cobras are stranded at the bottom on 26.86 points, with all the other four teams on 50-plus points.
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