The spin duo of Dane Piedt and George Linde handed the WSB Cape Cobras a vital 21-run win over the bizub Highveld Lions in the Momentum One Day Cup at the Recreation Ground in Oudtshoorn on Sunday.
The pair combined for figures of 20-0-71-5 to stifle any real chance of a Lions chase despite a valiant effort from Dwaine Pretorius as the allrounder smashed 75 from 42 balls with five boundaries and four sixes.
The Cobras, having won the toss and electing to bat first, posted a very competitive 298 for five thanks to an unbeaten half-century from Zubayr Hamza (88 not out), a second-consecutive fifty from man of the match Linde (57) and valuable support from the Malan brothers, Pieter (46) and Janneman (44) and quick cameo from Jason Smith (35 not out).
In reply, the Lions were bowled out for 277 with two balls remaining in the final over with Piedt claiming 2-32 in his 10 overs and Linde leading the way with 3-39. Dane Paterson finished off the innings with figures of 3-58 in 9.4 overs to hand the Cobras four vital points.
Janneman (44) and Pieter Malan (46) had given the home side a good start with an opening stand of 82 off 88 balls with Janneman cracking three fours and two sixes from 42 balls and was the first wicket to fall, caught and bowled by Nono Pongolo (6-0-2-34).
Pieter Malan and Hamza then carved 30 runs for the second wicket before Aaron Phangiso (10-0-51-2) trapped Pieter in front after facing 57 balls with two boundaries and a six. Hamza and Linde then combined to solidify their position and build the platform with a wonderful stand of 85 from 89 deliveries for the third wicket before Linde, having reached his fifty off 49 balls, holed out to Pretorius in the deep off Bjorn Fortuin (10-0-44-1). Linde’s five boundaries and a six from 55 balls was the perfect foil for Hamza, who continued to play his normal stroke-play.
The Lions though seemed to be clawing their way back into the game as Phangiso and Pongolo combined to see the back of Kyle Verreynne (10) and Aviwe Mgijima (8) respectively but Smith walked out and smashed two sixes along with a four from 27 balls to help push the Cobras close to the 300-run mark as he and Hamza put on 57 unbeaten runs for the sixth wicket from only 43 deliveries.
In reply, captain Piedt used himself and Linde early on with the captain opening the bowling himself, capturing the early wicket of Ryan Rickelton for just six. Reeza Hendricks (37) looked dangerous, smashing four consecutive boundaries off debutante Mpilo Njoloza (7-0-45-0) before edging Linde to Verreynne behind the stumps.
Rassie van der Dussen (37) and Kagiso Rapulana (46) tried to put their side back into the chase with a 70-run stand for the third wicket but that ended when Smith (4-0-23-1) had Rapulana caught by Paterson in the deep. The Lions slipped from 120 for two in the 27th over to 186 for six in the 41st as Van der Dussen, Delano Potgieter (17), Nicky van den Bergh (23) and Fortuin (1) were sent packing.
But Pretorius found some support in Pongolo (9) as the bowler stuck around to allow Pretorius to swing his arms. Pretorius decided to take the game to the Cobras and kept his side in the hunt – just. Pretorius took 19 runs off the 47th over bowled by Tladi Bokako (9-0-73-0) but was then dismissed at the end of the 48th over by Paterson, caught in the deep by Linde.
Paterson then claimed the wickets of Pongolo and Phangiso (10) to hand the Cobras the victory.
The Cobras’ next assignment is on Friday 1 March against the Multiply Titans at PPC Newlands while the Lions will lick their wounds and host the self-same Titans in three days time on Wednesday in Potchefstroom.