Sport

Titans in the lead for SuperSport Series trophy

Staff Reporter

Recording the largest victory margin in South African first-class cricket, the Titans beat the Dolphins to almost lift the SuperSport Series trophy.

Recording the largest victory margin in South African first-class cricket, the Titans beat the Dolphins to almost certainly lift the SuperSport Series trophy for the second time in four years.

They won by an innings and 325 runs in two days and ten minutes.

The Titans last won the four-day competition back in 2009.

In a commanding display, the Titans picked up 21.46 bonus points by racing to their first innings score of 473/9 declared on day one and then bowling out the Dolphins for 62 on day two forcing them to follow on.

It was the second lowest score in a first-class innings since franchise cricket was introduced in 2004.

Near impossible task
The Dolphins resumed their second innings at 81/7 in the Saturday morning session, still 330 runs behind, but pace bowlers Ethy Mbhalati and Rowan Richards wasted no time in removing the tail.

Needing only 2.2 overs to bag the last three scalps, the visitors were dismissed for 86 with Man-of-the-Match Mbhalati taking 5/32 for a match return of 8/61.

Faf du Plessis and Heino Kuhn had both scored centuries in the Titans’ only innings to lay the foundation.

Meanwhile, the Cape Cobras, who were leading by less than a point before the final round of matches, were 342 for six after 75 overs at stumps against the Lions in Johannesburg.

Left with a near impossible task of scoring another 208 runs off 25 overs to score maximum batting points from their first innings and needing to win the game, the Cobras gave it their best shot.

Erratic Lions bowling
Only 111 overs were possible in the first two rain-affected days with the Lions—who had been put in to bat—eventually all out for 410 before lunch on the third day.

Against some erratic Lions bowling, Yaseen Vallie dominated the Cobras’ innings on his way to his seventh career century off 129 balls, and was unbeaten on 142 at stumps.

Earlier, he combined with Mark Boucher for a fourth-wicket stand of 85 runs before Boucher was bowled by Craig Alexander for 42.

At stumps Vernon Philander was not out on 24 where he added 72 runs for an undefeated seventh wicket partnership with Vallie.

Cliffe Deacon bowled just two overs before he was sent for scans for either an intercostal muscle injury or stomach strain.

White and Prince to rebuild
In Port Elizabeth, the Warriors need 286 for victory with seven wickets in hand, against the Knights.

Quinton Friend took three wickets in one over—all three falling with the score on 27—leaving David White and Ashwell Prince to rebuild when they return to the crease on Sunday with the score at 28/3.

The Knights had resumed their second innings on 17/2 as Morne van Wyk stroked a valuable 155 runs off 168 balls (26 fours) to help them set a competitive target after they were all out for 373.

Van Wyk shared a SuperSport Series record 214-run stand with Ryan McLaren (90) for the seventh wicket.—Sapa

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