Half-centuries by Jonathan Vandiar, Shaun von Berg and Eldred Hawken gave the Titans a chance for a victory push after a solid day three of their 4-Day Domestic Series encounter against the Dolphins in Durban on Wednesday.
The visitors progressed from their overnight score of 4/1 to 325/8 – a lead of 139 and a relatively strong position, considering almost half the game has been lost due to bad light and rain at Kingsmead.
Vandiar led the way with an authoritative 67 (126 balls, 9 fours, 1 six), while captain Shaun von Berg produced his usual fight with 54 (115 balls, 8 fours).
Hawken then cut loose against a tiring home attack at the tail end of the day to smash an unbeaten 50 off 41 balls (10 fours) as the reigning champions finished powerfully.
Mark Boucher’s men, who like the Dolphins are seeking a first win of the season, were consistent throughout the day, with plenty of decent contributions all round.
Andrea Agathangelou (49) and Gionne Koopman (33) put on 69 for the second wicket, before Vandiar picked up the baton.
There was a passage of play when the Dolphins were given a glimmer of hope after they reduced the visitors to 153/5, thanks to two wickets each by Eathan Bosch (2/63) and debutant Lwandiswa Zuma (2/71).
But this slipped away, and with time running out, Hawken and Matthew Arnold (37) stretched the lead.
Keshav Maharaj had a tough day after sending down 40 overs – his reward being 3/122.
STUMPS: Weather intervenes yet again and brings a premature end to day 3 of #DOLvTTN. However, there was just enough time for Hawken (50*) to bring up his 2nd fifty of the season, coming off 41 balls, including 10 fours. #SkyBlues— The Titans (@Titans_Cricket) November 7, 2018
Titans 325-8 and a lead of 139. #4DaySeries pic.twitter.com/enpdbijkLw
Cricket South Africa