Cobras too strong for Dolphins in PMB
PIETERMARITZBURG – A polished performance with bat and ball from the Cape Cobra’s earned them a valuable five run win over the Dolphins at the Pietermaritzburg Oval on Sunday afternoon.
We are now perhaps starting to see why KZN was not given a match match during South Africa’s recent four test series against England. Rain throughout the Zulu Kingdom has been far too frequent this summer and caused a number of Durban Heat matches to be washed out during the 2019 Mzansi Super League campaign. Similarly, South Africa’s second ODI against England at Kingsmead on Friday was washed out. Sunday’s game was reduced to 43 overs for the Dolphins who were set aside a revised target of 286 following a rain delay during their chase.
Batting first, the Cobra’s showed that they have one of the most prolific batting units in the Momentum One Day Cup this season by scoring runs at ease with spinners Keshav Maharaj and Prenelan Subrayen being the only Dolphins bowlers who had an economy rate of less than 6 runs per over.
After Kerwin Mungroo dismissed Hanno Kotze (12) in the sixth over, Pieter Malan and Zubayr Hamza went on to put on a classy second wicket partnership of 111 which set a platform for the Cape Town based side to post a formidable score. Prenelan Subrayen brought an end to the partnership in the 27th over after Malan was dismissed for 71 after hitting the ball to Marques Ackerman at deep square leg.
Hamza’s knock was also supported by George Linde who hammered 49 from 28 balls before being trapped LBW by Keshav Maharaj as the Cobra’s posted 320/6 from their 50 overs.
Hamza’s form will be music to the ears of the Proteas selectors after the highly-rated specialist batsman struggled for form during the national sides recent test series against England. The 24-year-old is once again looking confident at the crease and his century was preceded by a knock of 58 during his sides 49 run loss against the Lions on Friday.
In response, the Dolphins were looking good and were 121/1 when rain halted play. Sarel Erwee and in-form youngster Grant Roelofsen put on 74 runs for the first wicket before the latter was dismissed by Thando Ntini after lofting the ball to Piedt at mid-off.
Roelofsen batted fluently with the experienced Vaughn Van Jaarsveld (41) before the latter was clean bowled by Dane Piedt.
Jason Smith gave the Cobras an advantage in the 30th over by getting the key wicket of the in form Roelofsen for 69 as well as dismissing Sibonelo Makhanya for 0. Khaya Zondo and the hard-hitting Robbie Frylinck put on 63 for the sixth wicket before the latter was eventually stumped by Hanno Kotze from the bowling of Smith.
The game was eventually won following Nandre Burger’s triple wicket 41st over with the casualties being Zondo, Maharaj and Subrayen. Imraan Tahir played a late cameo, scoring 17 from 11 deliveries but his efforts were not enough to save the Dolphins from their first One Day Cup defeat of the season.