Cobras, Lions heading for draw
Cape Town - Justin Ontong and Omphile Ramela scored half-centuries to take the Cape Cobras to 328 for nine at stumps on the third day of their SuperSport Series match against the Highveld Lions at Sahara Park Newlands on Saturday.
The duo’s efforts left the Cobras trailing the Lions by 88 runs on the first innings.
Paceman Andre Nel was the standout performer with the ball for the visitors as the big quick ended the day with figures of four for 60.
Ramela, making his SuperSport Series debut for the Cobras, compiled an attractive 87 off 149 deliveries, with his knock including 14 fours, before he was trapped leg-before by left-arm spinner Monty Panesar shortly before the tea break.
Ontong collected 60 runs off 172 balls but he fell when he cut a delivery from seamer Ugasen Govender straight to Jonathan Vandiar at point.
The left-handed Ramela and Ontong had combined for a fourth-wicket partnership that produced 111 runs of 39.1 overs while Ontong’s dismissal left the Cobras on 167 for four.
Ramela and Justin Kemp (15) then added 45 runs for the fifth wicket before Kemp was caught by a leaping Vandiar at midwicket to give Panesar his first wicket of the match.
The left-arm spinner struck 11 runs later when he claimed Ramela’s wicket.
Nel then removed Paul Canning (23) before Robin Peterson (41) and Rory Kleinveldt (34) frustrated the Lions bowlers with an eighth-wicket partnership that produced 58 runs.
But their stand was ended when Peterson mistimed a pull shot off Govender and was caught by Nel at mid-on who dove to his right to take a one-handed catch, inches off the ground.
Govender struck again in the penultimate over of the day when he had Kleinveldt caught by Stephen Cook at first slip.
Govender ended the day with figures of three for 41 while Monde Zondeki with five and Francois Plaatjies, who had yet to score, were at the crease.
The home side had begun the day on 32 for two with Ontong and opening batsman Alistair Grey at the crease.
Grey added five runs to his overnight total of 16 before he top-edged a delivery from Nel and was caught by Cook at short leg to leave the Cobras on 56 for three before Ontong and Ramela produced their sterling partnership.
Andrew Puttick (captain), Alistair Gray, Stiaan van Zyl, Ryan Canning (wk), Justin Ontong, Justin Kemp, Robin Peterson, Omphile Ramela, Rory Kleinveldt, Monde Zondeki, Francois Plaatjies
Stephen Cook, Alviro Petersen, Jonathan Vandiar, Neil McKenzie (captain), Vaughn van Jaarsveld, Zander de Bruyn, Cliffie Deacon, Thami Tsolekile (wk), Andre Nel, Monty Panesar, Ugasen Govender