Lions win Gauteng derby in rain interrupted clash
Imperial Lions 124/4 (R. Hendricks 39, Van de Dussen 37*)
Multiplay Titans 112/8 (B. Hendricks 2/7)
Lions won by 18 runs on DLS method
JOHANNESBURG - Ultimately, what on paper looked to be the match of the round-robin phase, ended up as a bit of damp squib, although the intensity wasn’t lacking in a fixture packed with Proteas.
The Lions emerged victorious - comfortably so - thanks to a fabulous bowling and fielding display, in which they were relentless and aggressive.
The rain didn’t help matters. The Titans had bowled well too, and it took a beautifully crafted innings from Reeza Hendricks to provide the Lions with a foundation. Such was the quality of the bowling however that the Lions could never get their run rate much above 7.5 an over, and following the removal of Hendricks and Bavuma in quick succession, the innings needed consolidation.
Rassie van der Dussen and Delano Potgieter provided that, and just when Van der Dussen was setting himself for charge at the end the rain came. Van der Dussen had deposited a full toss from Lizaad Williams out of the stadium, but the players left the field in the 17th over.
The Titans were then asked to chase an adjusted total of 131 in 15 overs, but they never got to grips with the Lions’ bowling. Wickets kept falling with Beuran Hendricks outstanding, while Bjorn Fortuin also picked up two with some accurate left-arm spin.
#BetwayT20Challenge | DERBY WIN 🔴— Imperial Lions (@LionsCricketSA) February 22, 2021
The Imperial Lions claim bragging rights with a hard fought victory over @Titans_Cricket
B Hendricks 2 Wickets - 7 runs conceded - 3 Overs played
R vd Dussen 37*
THE HIGHVELD IS RED 🔴#TTNvLIO #Aggression pic.twitter.com/4tVEd1Abzc
That Junior Dala, with 21, turned out to be the top score for the Titans, reflects their struggles, but such is the experience in that team, it shouldn’t cause any panic.
For the Lions this was a statement performance. Their bowling is packed with talent - so much so that they can afford to leave Wiaan Mulder out of the starting side at the moment, while Aaron Phangiso didn’t even get a bowl on Monday.
With so many Proteas in action, there was a real intensity to proceedings and a few chirps flew around between the players, making for a captivating game.
Hopefully these two teams meet again some time later in the tournament, this time without rain playing such a big role.
The Lions will face the Knights - who will no doubt still be high on their last ball win against the Cobras - on Tuesday afternoon, while the morning fixture is between the hapless Cape Cobras and the Warriors.