The Multiply Titans swept the WSB Cape Cobras aside with a bonus-point seven-wicket victory thanks to a wonderful half-century from Henry Davids in the CSA T20 Challenge at Willowmoore Park in Benoni on Wednesday evening.
Man of the match Davids swept to his 22nd T20 career half-century, needing just 34 deliveries to do so before being caught off the bowling of Vernon Philander (3.4-0-28-1) for 57 which included eight boundaries and a six while Diego Rosier (43 not out) and Theunis de Bruyn (29) aided with some powerful hitting.
The Titans’ bowlers kept things tight in the first innings after captain Farhaan Behardien had won the toss and elected to bowl first, justifying the decision as the Cobras were restricted to 150 for five in which Kyle Verreynne top-scored with 44. In reply, Davids, Rosier and De Bruyn powered the home side to 151 for three with a massive 26 balls to spare, handing their side victory with a bonus-point.
Davids shared in two quick-fire half-century stands with De Bruyn for the second wicket and then Rosier for the third. De Bruyn joined Davids at the crease after Tony de Zorzi (12) had been run out by Hashim Amla with the total on 31 and the pair quickly set about chasing the bonus point, smashing 51 for the second wicket off only 27 balls.
De Bruyn, who faced just 13 balls, struck four boundaries and a six before being caught by Dane Paterson off George Linde (4-0-35-1) but the carnage was not to end as Rosier quickly hit his straps. Rosier and the veteran Davids added a further 56 runs for the third wicket from 35 deliveries but with the home side requiring just 13 runs for victory, Philander returned to the attack and had Davids caught by the substitute fielder, Jason Smith, as Verreynne was injured.
Rosier, who struck seven fours from 27 balls, and Grant Thomson (4 not out) completed the chase in 15.4 overs to give the Titans their first victory of the T20 campaign.
Earlier, Verreynne continued his good form striking one four and two sixes from 38 balls before having to retire hurt at the end of the 19th over but not before holding the Cobras innings together. The visitors failed to put any good partnership together except for the sixth-wicket stand between Verreynne and Philander (22 not out), which realised 46 runs from 25 balls.
Amla’s struggles with the bat continued, falling to Eldred Hawken (4-0-39-1) for just two while Janneman Malan (22) and David Bedingham (10) failed to impress on the scoreboard. Linde (6) failed to get going, being run out by Thomson while Simon Khomari (20) could only find the boundary once in his 20-ball innings.
It was up to Philander, who faced just 11 balls, striking two fours and a six and Rory Kleinveldt (12 not out) to boost the total to something worth defending, with Kleinveldt smashing two sixes in four balls in the final over.
The Titans batsmen will be extremely thankful to the spin duo of Gregory Mahlokwana (4-0-19-1) and Shaun von Berg (4-0-18-1) as the pair strangled the the visiting strike-force. Mahlokwana’s left-arm spin opened the bowling and was rewarded with the late wicket of Khomari while Von Berg’s off spin claimed the scalp of Malan.
Thomson’s two overs cost just 12 runs meaning that the trio restricted the Cobras to just 49 runs in 10 overs while Junior Dala (4-0-35-1) and Davids (2-0-21-0) allowed the visiting batsmen some freedom.
The victory for the home side lifted them to second on the log with five points from two games while the Cobras slipped to second from bottom, one point behind the Titans. The Cobras head back home to Paarl on Friday where they host the table-topping Warriors while the Titans host the Hollywoodbets Dolphins here in Benoni, also pon Friday.