Clinical Kleinveltd leads Cobras to victory
AFTER a season that’s featured more drama than is necessary for any cricket side, this is a victory the Cape Cobras will treasure.
Clearly the administrators at Western Cape Cricket will wonder if they should have acted sooner in making a coaching change at the franchise, for in Ashwell Prince they seem to have someone the players clearly respect and who has been able to galvanise that dressing room.
This was a win built on hard work. For while the Titans were far from their best in this match – their skipper Henry Davids called it their “worst” performance of the season – they showed plenty of fighting spirit. That was no match for the Cobras.
None more so than the veteran Rory Kleinveldt, who bowled magnificently throughout this match, and gained deserved reward on the final day with an 11th franchise first class ‘five-for.’
The Titans resumed still 110 runs in arrears after Dane Piedt’s smart declaration on Saturday evening, and the key was always going to be how they could bat through the first session.
However Kleinveldt wouldn’t let them. He struck two significant blows inside the first hour removing Heino Kuhn, courtesy of a superb catch by Dane Vilas, for 41 and then Dean Elgar with a beauty that bounced and left him off the surface giving Vilas an easy catch behind.
A few moments earlier Aiden Markram was out gloving an attempted hook against Lizaad Williams and when Henry Davids was bowled off his elbow – a vicious delivery from Kleinveldt – the Titans were in deep trouble at 80/4.
They never got out of it as the Cobras continued to maintain a vice-like grip thanks to the discipline and patience of Jason Smith and Tshepo Moreki. Grant Mokoena again failed to assert himself and was trapped lbw for five by Moreki after spending nearly 90 minutes at the crease.
Once again Heinrich Klaasen was left to display his fighting qualities backing up his halfcentury in the first innings with another in the second, but there was little support from the rest of