Warriors stay in the hunt for the T20 semis after win over Knights
CAPE TOWN – The Warriors have laid down the gauntlet to the Cape Cobras and the Titans ahead of the final day of CSA T20 league phase of the competition.
Robin Peterson's team have stayed true to their attacking philosophy throughout the competition even when the results were initially going against the Eastern Cape side.
But having discovered their mojo on Wednesday with a shock victory over the Sky Blues, they continued their new-found form with another victory over the Knights.
The result eliminated the central franchise, but in turn propelled the Warriors to nine points. This has left the Cobras with a slim chance of still progressing to the playoffs if they beat the Highveld Lions with a bonus point, while the
Titans must now beat the top-of-the-table Dolphins to ensure their qualification.
The go-to-man for the Warriors was once again Mthiwekhaya Nabe. The medium-pacer is in stellar form, adding another excellent 3/19 to his "four-fer" the previous day.
Nabe was well-supported by Proteas speedster Anrich Nortje (2/17) and Marco Jansen (2/30) to dismiss the Knights for 143. Allan Donald's team's run chase was rocked first ball when Patrick Kruger was run out for a duck, but Raynard van Tonder and Matthew Kleinveldt ensured the PowerPlay remained profitable with a 52-run stand for the second wicket.
However, after Kleinveldt's dismissal it was left to Van Tonder to play a lone hand with a brilliant 81 not out off 57 balls (6x4, 3x6).
The youngster never had any support and the Knights chase fell away.
The Warriors innings followed a similar pattern with Jon-Jon Smuts and Gihann Cloete making merry in the PowerPlay, but they too could not capitalise on the good start.
But at least the Warriors had Lesiba Ngoepe to keep their innings afloat. Ngoepe, who was coming two first ball ducks, finally found some form with a clean-hitting 41 off 30 balls to help push the Warriors to a competitive total that ultimately enough to get them over the line.
Warriors: 157/8 (Ngoepe 41, Smuts 33, Budaza 3/18)
Knights: 143 all out (Van Tonder, 81*, Nabe 3/19, Nortje 2/17)
Warriors won by 14 runs