Titans hold out for draw
Jacques Rudolph (Gallo Images)
Kimberley - Jacques Rudolph
and Heino Kuhn saved the day for the Titans as the Sunfoil Series match against the Knights at the De Beers Diamond Oval ended in a draw on Sunday.Full scorecard
The match was called off after 46 overs in the Titans second innings with the visitors on 159 for four. Rudolph was undefeated on 73, his second half-century of the match. He faced 173 balls and stroke twelve boundaries.
Kuhn, who had scored 78 in the first innings, finished on 32 off 72 balls, with five fours.
Set a winning target of 402 runs in 70 overs, the Titans lost quick wickets before the tea break.
When Rudolph and Kuhn resumed on 119 for four after the break, they had the near impossible assignment of scoring 283 runs in forty overs. They knew that if they lost two more wickets, they would have exposed their brittle lower order against the quality fast bowlers, Ryan McLaren
and Quinton Friend.
Rudolph and Kuhn were merely interested in defending against the spinners.
Earlier, McLaren removed Tumelo Bodibe for a duck in the first over of the second innings.
Roelof van der Merwe and Rudolph went on the offensive, showing aggressive intent as they collected 79 runs in less than thirteen overs. Van der Merwe scored 39 off 27 balls before he flicked a delivery from Malusi Siboto to fine leg, where he was neatly caught by Aubrey Swanepoel.
A mini-collapse followed, as the Titans slipped from 79 for 2 to 99 for 4.
The soft dismissals of Henry Davids and Pieter Malan made the visitors realise that it would be suicidal to attempt a chase of this magnitude with little left in reserve in terms of quality batsmen.
Davids was caught in the gully by Quinton Friend off Dillon du Preez for 1. Pieter Malan ran himself out when he pushed the ball to gully and set off for a run, only to be sent back by Rudolph. He contributed 8.
On Sunday morning, the Knights resumed their second innings on 133 for four, an overall lead of 288 runs.
During the first 25 overs of the day, the Knights stuttered by adding only 59 runs and losing four wickets.
A defensive field setting and accurate bowling contributed to the pedestrian pace.
Ethy Mbhalati captured 5-50 in 20.5 overs, while the left-arm spinner Paul Harris
finished with 4-89 in 32 overs.
Friend revived the Knights’ run chase with a quick-fire 28 off 33 balls. Inspired by his dynamic onslaught, Obus Pienaar went on the attack and helped the hosts to score 57 runs in the final 9.5 overs of their innings.
Pienaar finished on 80 off 114 balls, with eight fours and a six.
The Knights shaded the Titans in the bonus point tally, by collecting 9.68 points. The Titans accumulated 7 points.
Ryan Bailey provided a statistical and aesthetically pleasing highlight with his attractive maiden double ton in the match. He scored 220.
Mbhalati boasted a match-haul of 11-148.Teams:
Morné van Wyk (captain), Dean Elgar, Reeza Hendricks, Obus Pienaar, Ryan Bailey, Werner Coetsee, Ryan McLaren
, Aubrey Swanepoel, Malusi Siboto, Quinton Friend, Dillon du PreezTitans:
Henry Davids (captain), Jacques Rudolph
, Tumelo Bodibe, Pieter Malan, Heino Kuhn, David Wiese, Paul Harris
, CJ de Villiers, Ethy Mbhalati, Rowan Richards, Roelof van der Merwe.