JOHANNESBURG – Having played themselves into the superior position in this Four-Day Series match, the Dolphins will Saturday have to make some critical decisions if they hope to win it.
Friday’s play was ended just before 5pm when massive gusts of wind brought dark clouds over Centurion. Another storm has been forecast for about the same time on Saturday afternoon.
With their lead already at 255, the Dolphins have some tricky decisions to make in the morning. Bat on and make the lead impossible for the Titans to chase, or declare quickly leaving themselves, and especially their ace spinner Keshav Maharaj, sufficient time before the storm hits to try and bowl the Titans out?
Perhaps the fact that it’s still early days in the competition might lead the visitors to adopting a cautious approach, but their endeavours with the bat on Friday, and the Titans’ poor play with the ball and in the field, would make winning this match a deserved outcome for the Dolphins.
Stumps Day 3 @Hollywoodbets Dolphins 294-7 with a lead of 255 runs and 3 wickets remaining.
Standout performances for the day:@vaughnvj- 67 (97) @calvin_savage1- 51 (80) #TTNvDOL pic.twitter.com/7kaC30Mx2n
They scrapped particularly well through the first two sessions, taking advantage of some luck, especially so in the case of Vaughn van Jaarsveld. The big hitting left hander wasn’t at his best and should have been out on 29 when an edge off the bowling of Junior Dala flew towards Shaun von Berg in the slips, but the leg-spinner inexplicably missed it.
It was a moment that summed up the Titans’s play; they were unusually lethargic in the field, and their bowlers, with the exception of Eldred Hawken, too inconsistent with lines and lengths.
It was a disappointing day for Chris Morris, who is looking to press his claims for a spot in the national side.
As the most senior of the Titans bowlers, he set a poor example for his teammates with a couple of wayward spells. Given its his first serious outing in a while since recovering from injury, their maybe some sympathy for him, but Morris and his teammates expect more of him, and he failed to deliver yesterday.
Besides Van Jaarsveld’s nuggety 67, the other standout performer for the Dolphins was all-rounder Calvin Savage, who backed up a fine performance with the ball, when he took 4/61 in the Titans’s first innings, with a composed and as yet unbeaten half-century.
He brought up the landmark with a thumping lofted drive for six of Alfred Mothoa, putting a stamp on an excellent day for the visitors before the clouds rolled in and ended proceedings.
Day 3 of 4:
HollywoodBets Dolphins 269 and 294/7
Multiply Titans 308