Dane Vilas scored an unbeaten half century to guide the Durban Heat to a seven-wicket victory over the Cape Town Blitz in the Mzansi Super League 2.0 at PPC Newlands in Cape Town on Thursday evening.
Vilas played the perfect captains innings as he first combined with Wihan Lubbe (49) and then David Miller (25 not out) as the Heat chased down 182 for three in reply to the Blitz’s 181 for five, inflicting a third, successive defeat on the Cape outfit.
Vilas struck six fours and three sixes to end unbeaten on 75 off 52 balls while Miller, quiet on the night, struck one four and a six off 26 balls as the pair posted an unbeaten 93 runs for the fourth wicket off 67 deliveries to guide their side to an emphatic victory.
Vilas and Lubbe, who struck eight fours and a six from just 28 balls, shared in a 65-run stand for the third wicket from 42 balls after Dale Steyn (4-0-25-2) had reduced the visitors to 24 for two by the end of the second over. After Wesley Marshall (12) and Alex Hales (10) had taken Vernon Philander (2-0-25-0) to the cleaners in the first over, Steyn struck with two wickets.
Lubbe, who scored 83 against the Blitz in Durban, fell one short of another fifty when the spin of Mohammad Nawaz (4-0-32-1) beat his swinging bat and crashed into his stumps. The Blitz sensed an opening but Vilas and Miller shut the door in their face and paced their chase to perfection, scoring the winning runs with three balls to spare.
Earlier, Janneman Malan scored 75 from 42 balls with two fours and seven sixes to go top of the runs chart and shared in a wonderful second-wicket stand worth 101 off 61 deliveries with David Bedingham (44) to lay the foundation for the above par score after Quinton de Kock (10) had won the toss and elected to bat first.
Bedingham, playing in his first game of the season, struck three boundaries and two maximums from 33 balls before Englishman Liam Livingstone (27) came to life at the back-end of the innings, taking Kyle Abbott (4-0-32-2) for 19 runs in the final over, which included three consecutive sixes down the ground.
Philander (18 not out) struck three quick fours off nine balls to help the Blitz achieve 181 for five. Keshav Maharaj (4-0-24-0) failed to take a wicket but was the most economical bowler on the night while the tall left-arm pace of Marco Jansen added a great catch to his 1-41. But it was Andile Phehlukwayo (3-0-22-1) who made the early breakthrough when he had De Kock brilliantly caught by Jansen at short mid-wicket.
The Heat head back to Durban to host the Nelson Mandela Bay Giants on Saturday while the Blitz host the Tshwane Spartans here at Newlands on Sunday.
**as published on Supersport.com