Dean Elgar brought up the 39th century of his first-class career to help the Titans score over 400 against the Lions. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

A century by Dean Elgar led a strong reply by the Titans on day three of their 4-Day Domestic Series derby against the Highveld Lions in Potchefstroom on Wednesday.

The Proteas opener enjoyed a welcome return to form by striking 128 (200 balls, 19 fours, 1 six) as the visitors were bowled out for 419 shortly before stumps at Senwes Park.

Jonathan Vandiar and Shaun von Berg also hit half-centuries for the defending champions, who trailed by 111 as they replied strongly to the hosts’ 530.

They had begun day four on 165/3 with Elgar 11 short of his 39th career century, which he completed not long after the start.

The 31-year-old put on 82 with Vandiar before falling, having notched up his first ton of the season.

His partner went on to make 84 (172 balls, 10 fours, 2 sixes) and then added 79 with Sizwe Masondo (27) for the fifth wicket.

After both departed in quick succession followed almost immediately by Matthew Arnold (10), Von Berg dug in with a fighting 52-run eighth-wicket partnership with Eldred Hawken (5).

After the departure of the fast bowler, the captain managed to squeeze out 44 with the tail as he ended unbeaten on 81 (129 balls, 11 fours, 1 six).

Beuran Hendricks was the pick of the bowlers with 3/77, while Bjorn Fortuin finished with 2/60.

The Lions faced two overs in their second innings and reached 2/0, extending their lead to 113.

Cricket South Africa