Titans in command in Bloemfontein

The Titans commanded the second day’s play of their SuperSport Series match against the Eagles as they extended their lead to 359 runs at the close of play at the Outsurance Oval in Bloemfontein on Friday.

The Titans were to continue their second innings on Saturday on 330/8 in the City of Roses. Batsmen Paul Harris (30 not out) and Dale Steyn (17 not out) will try to extend the visitors’ lead further. They shared an unbeaten 40-run partnership.

Earlier, the Titans started the second day with 13 runs for no loss. The visitors lost an early wicket when opener Heino Kuhn (six) was trapped leg before by Victor Mpitsang. Opener Rushdi Jappie (43) and Faf du Plessis (50) shared a telling 80-run second-wicket partnership.

Mpitsang ended the partnership when Boeta Dippenaar held on to take an awesome catch in the slips to dismiss Du Plessis.

Martin van Jaarsveld and Brendon Reddy shared another telling partnership for the seventh wicket. They scored 89 runs before CJ de Villiers caught Reddy off his own bowling in the 82nd over.

Eagles spinner Thandi Tshabalala was the form bowler with three wickets. He dismissed Albie Morkel (20), Pierre Joubert (16) and Jappie. He only conceded 97 runs in his 31 overs.

Mpitsang also dismissed three of the visitor’s batsmen, sending Kuhn, Du Plessis and Farhaan Behardien (0) back to the dressing room. He conceded a mere 55 runs in his 18 overs.

Puttick scores

Andrew Puttick scored his second 100 in three SuperSport Series matches to anchor the Cape Cobras’ reply at Boland Park in Paarl on Friday.

The Cobras reached 228/3 at stumps on day two in reply to the Warriors’ 346 all out earlier in the day.

It was Puttick (100 not out) (326 minutes, 204 balls, 9×4), with great support from JP Duminy (71) and Ashwell Prince (37 not out) who lit up the day’s play. He drove well through the offside and punished all the short deliveries.

The left-hander added 115 runs with Duminy for the third wicket and 91 in an unbroken stand for the fourth with Prince.

Duminy was in effervescent form and stroking the ball all over the park. He slowed down towards the end of his innings and was caught by Davy Jacobs off the bowling of Robin Peterson.

If their was one criticism against the Cobra batters — Duminy apart — it was that they scored their runs at less than three an over, and it is debatable whether there is enough time to win the match.

Prince did his best Barnacle Bailey impression and will have to speed up on Saturday if the Cobras are still to win this match.

The Cape side have not won a match in this competition since March last year and they will be desperate to break their drought.

Earlier, Johan Botha ensured that the Warriors reached respectability with a fine 91 not out. He added 37 of the 43 runs the visitors gained on Friday morning and frustrated the Cobras’ bowlers. — Sapa

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