Van Zyl’s unbeaten ton puts Cobras in driving seat
STIAAN van Zyl struck a superb, unbeaten century to leave the Cape Cobras on top at the halfway stage of their season-opening, domestic four-day cricket clash against the Dolphins in Pietermaritzburg yesterday.
The left-hander ended not out on 167, his 12th career ton, as the defending champions amassed 398 in reply to the home side’s 88 on day one.
Van Zyl also shared in an entertaining 111-run seventhwicket partnership with Rory Kleinveldt (72 off 64 balls).
The Dolphins replied with 125/1 by the close, still 185 runs behind, thanks to an unbeaten 52 by Divan van Wyk.
Lance Klusener’s men had made a great start to proceedings, with Yaseen Vallie dismissed in the second over of the morning when he missed a straight ball from Kyle Abbott and was on his way for a duck.
Twelve deliveries later, Dane Vilas (4) followed, with a leading edge off Keshav Maharaj looping to Prenelan Subrayen at short cover leaving the total on 140/5.
Van Zyl, on 63 overnight, was joined by Justin Kemp (42) as the pair put on 74 for the sixth wicket, including the former reaching hundred in 139 deliveries.
When the stand was eventually broken, Kleinveldt came in and picked up the mantle.
Dropped on six by Maharaj off Subrayen on the deep-midwicket fence, the fast bowler raced to 50 in 36 balls.
By the time he was out, he had clubbed four sixes and nine fours, taking a particular liking to the spin trio of Daryn Smit (1/51), Maharaj (3/106) and Subrayen (4/115).
The last three wickets added a further 73 with Van Zyl, before the Cobras were dismissed two shy of 400.
The Dolphins were much improved the second time around, and lost only Imraan Khan (29) courtesy of some disciplined off-break bowling by Dane Piedt. However, Van Wyk and Khaya Zondo ( 35) then shared an unbroken 79- run stand by the close.
Meanwhile, in Centurion, a fluent 158-run second-wicket stand between Heino Kuhn and Cobus Pienaar kept the Titans in their game against the Highveld Lions.
The Pretoria outfit reached stumps on 278/6, although they relinquished their solid position by the close as they replied to the visiting side’s 419 all out earlier.
Kuhn (88) and Pienaar (83) took just over 30 overs for their stand, before Hardus Viljoen’s 4/ 58 led a strong fightback, which left the Titans still 141 behind.
Thami Tsolekile had earlier made 63 not out, while Farhaan Behardien was going strong on 58 not out for the hosts.
In East London, half centuries by Ashwell Prince and David White ensured the Warriors were right in the contest against the Knights as they reached stumps on 228/5.
The pair, who made 72 and 73 respectively, put on 134 together for the second wicket, with their stand proving key in the reply to the visitors’ 324 all out earlier in the day, a deficit of 96.
Werner Coetsee had claimed 3/54 by the close, while the Knights, who had began the day on 307/8, managed to add just 74 more runs with wicketkeeper Lefa Mosena the last man out for 73. – Sapa