Shaun von Berg grabbed three wickets on the final day as the Titans returned to the top of the Sunfoil Series table with a tame draw against the Cape Cobras at Sahara Park Willowmoore in Benoni on Sunday.
The leg-break bowler finished with three for 54 in 16 overs as the visitors reached 185 for six, before declaring with a target of 268 for the hosts.
But the match laboured to a draw after the Titans reached 57 for two in 17.5 overs when the match ended.
The home side walked away with 12.42 points from the match, just enough to help them regain top spot which they had lost to the Warriors on Saturday after the latter had beaten the Highveld Lions.
But Mark Boucher’s side saw their lead substantially cut with four matches to play. Their 92.1 point total is just over five points clear of the Eastern Cape franchise, with most of the other teams, including the Cobras, also making gains.
However, the result of Sunday was a mere formality after only two innings had been completed over the first three days.
The third innings of the game resumed on day four with the Cape side 82 runs ahead and they batted for 50.1 overs in a bid to try and force an unlikely result.
Aviwe Mgijima top-scored with 43, while there was 36 apiece from Zubayr Hamza and Kyle Verreynne, before the declaration.
Von Berg’s three-for was supported by two for 23 by Junior Dala. Elgar then hit 27 before falling and the match ending without a winner.
Vilas helps Dolphins to fighting draw
An unbeaten century by Dane Vilas as well as supporting half-centuries by Senuran Muthusamy and Vaughn van Jaarsveld helped the Dolphins complete a credible Sunfoil Series draw against the Knights in Bloemfontein on Sunday.
The veteran wicketkeeper struck a free-scoring 102 (105 balls, 14 fours, 2 sixes) to help the visitors move from their overnight 187 for one in their follow innings to 426 for four when the match ended.
It was a credible fightback by the Dolphins, who were poor in their first innings when they were bowled out for 237.
This was in reply to the sizeable 478 by the home side as the Durbanites were forced to bat again.
And, with the odds stacked against them, Sarel Erwee’s day three century gave them hope, before Vilas picked up the baton on the final day.
The former, not out on 108 at the start, eventually fell for 128 (270 balls, 14 fours).He was the second of the three wickets on the day to fall, all for one run and within the space of 2.3 overs.
Erwee’s removal was sandwiched by those of Van Jaarsveld (51 off 64 balls, 7 fours, 1 six), with whom he added 80 with for the second wicket, and Sibonelo Makhanya for a duck.
It opened the door slightly for the reigning champion Knights, but Muthusamy shut it closed again with an unbeaten 73 (149 balls, 6 fours, 1 six) to help Vilas save the day.
It was the all-rounder’s second half century of the game after his 95 in the first innings, while the latter went on to complete his 15th career ton on his way to saving the game.
The result propelled the Knights to 85.08 points in third, just over seven behind the leading Multiply Titans (92.10). The Dolphins (72.70) are fifth.
A teleconference on Thursday could bring positive news for cricket fans.
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The Lancastrian was fresh off some standout displays in the 2003 World Cup.
Hales lost his place in last year’s World Cup-winning squad after news of a second failed test for recreational drugs.
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