Su­per Co­bras in win­ning mood

Pow­er­ful charge leaves Lions on the rack

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - SPORT - MICHAEL DO­MAN

THE Cape Co­bras all but sewed up their third vic­tory in four Su­per­Sport Se­ries games when they had the Lions on the rack at 146 for seven in their sec­ond in­nings here yes­ter­day, still need­ing 109 runs to make the de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons bat again.

The Lions were 255 runs be­hind af­ter the Co­bras’ first in­nings ef­fort of 341, and although they had a de­cent start the sec­ond time around, their bat­ting dis­ap­pointed again yes­ter­day.

At the close Dale Deeb (33, five fours) and Cliffie Dea­con (19, four fours) were at the crease, with only slight hopes of tak­ing the con­test into the fourth in­nings.

When they bat­ted a sec­ond time the Lions needed brave, dis­ci­plined bat­ting. The bats­men tried, but they were way short on pa­tience, and the Co­bras’ mix of tight bowl­ing and sharp catch­ing proved hard to re­sist.

The ini­tial break­through was made by spin­ner Robin Peter­son (2-25), who in­duced Do­minic Hen­dricks to sweep on 13, with the open­ing stand up to 37. Hen­dricks was ad­judged lbw, and just five balls later his open­ing part­ner Stephen Cook edged Rory Klein­veldt only for JP Du­miny to take a good catch low to his left at third slip.

Two wick­ets had fallen on 37, and the big­gest part­ner­ship of the in­nings un­til the un­bro­ken one of 52 in 45 min­utes for the eighth wicket to take play to the close af­ter the ex­tra half-hour was played, was a poor 16 runs.

Jonathan Van­diar (nine) and Neil Mcken­zie (six) went within a run of each other to make it 54-4. Van­diar lapped Peter­son to legslip, and a low Klein­veldt de­liv­ery trapped big hope Mcken­zie in front.

The next three men went caught in the slips by Co­bras skip­per Justin Kemp, the last of them be­ing doughty fighter Temba Bavuma (16 in 76 min­utes, three fours).

The tiny No 5 bats­man gave it away, though, af­ter his ear­lier cau­tion, driv­ing ex­pan­sively at off­spin­ner Du­miny and get­ting the out­side edge.

Dea­con and Deeb then ben­e­fited from the Co­bras’ at­tack­ing fields as they put in some at­tack­ing shots.

It was a team ef­fort from the Co­bras bowlers, with Klein­veldt (227) the only other bowler to take more than one wicket.

Ear­lier Co­bras cen­tury-maker Justin On­tong had pro­gressed from 100 not out overnight to 146 be­fore be­com­ing the fourth vic­tim of seamer Shane Burger, who broke the back of the Co­bras mid­dle-or­der.

The Co­bras had started the day on 196-3.

On­tong’s bound­ary tally was 21 fours and a six when, shortly af­ter lunch, Burger beat his bat and trapped him in front, end­ing the 18th first-class cen­tury of the man from Paarl.

Burger de­liv­ered a dis­ci­plined per­for­mance to claim 4-74, grab­bing his wick­ets over seven overs ei­ther side of the lunch in­ter­val.

From the re­ac­tion of his first two vic­tims – Du­miny (63 in 183 min­utes, 10 fours) and Kemp (one) – nei­ther thought much of the lbw de­ci­sions they were dished out by um­pire Karl Hurter.

Du­miny played for­ward, and Kemp’s im­pact was on the high side, but Burger had made the vi­tal break­through in get­ting the former bats­man, break­ing a 142-run fourth wicket stand be­tween him and On­tong which took just over three hours.

On­tong’s demise later meant the Co­bras had lost four wick­ets for 31 runs, and on 281-7 their lead was 195 runs.

Big Rory Klein­veldt then en­ter­tained the al­most non- ex­is­tent au­di­ence with a run- a- ball 40 which in­cluded 10 fours, some driven, some pulled and a cou­ple del­i­cately dabbed off-side.

He and Robin Peter­son (15 in 66 min­utes, three fours) fash­ioned an eighth-wicket part­ner­ship of 59 at five to the over, with Klein­veldt bash­ing four bound­aries in one Dea­con over.

This helped grow the Co­bras’ bat­ting bonus point tally grow to 4.82, with the Lions pock­et­ing the full four points for bowl­ing.

On Thurs­day the Co­bras’ bowl­ing points haul was four.

Dea­con yes­ter­day con­trib­uted 16 ex­tras to the to­tal via 15 no-balls and a wide, but his new-ball part­ner Pumelela Mat­shikwe went top of the Su­per­sport Se­ries wick­et­tak­ing ta­ble, his 4-67 tak­ing him to 23 vic­tims in the com­pe­ti­tion this sea­son.

He fin­ished off the tail, hav­ing Klein­veldt caught on the square­leg fence, and Jo­hann Louw caught by wick­et­keeper Thami Tsolek­ile. The last three Co­bras wick­ets fell for a sin­gle run, in eight balls.

Should the Co­bras, as ex­pected, fin­ish off the match to­day, it would be their third vic­tory in­side three days this sum­mer.

Their fourth match, against the Dol­phins at New­lands in Oc­to­ber, ended in a draw.

Peter Heeger/gallo Im­ages

TOP SCORER: Justin On­tong goes on the hook in his score of 146 for the Co­bras in their Su­per­sport Se­ries match against the Lions at New­lands yes­ter­day.

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