Durban - An unbroken 75-run partnership between David Miller and Daryn Smit helped the Dolphins end their MiWay T20 Challenge season on a high with a convincing six wicket win over the Cape Cobras in Durban on Wednesday.
Proteas middle-order batsman Miller ended unbeaten on 34 off 30 balls, while wicketkeeper Smit finished on 40 off 34 as the hosts chased down their 121 victory target with seven balls to spare.
Earlier, Alistair Gray (32 off 21), Dane Vilas (26 off 24) and Justin Kemp (29 off 28) all got starts but failed to kick on as the visitors limped through their 20 overs.
After winning the toss and inserting the opposition, the home side struck early by removing the competition’s top run-scorer, Stiaan van Zyl, for just three when he was bowled by Kyle Abbott with a delivery that kept low - the opener ending with an aggregate of 416.
Debutant Matthew Kleinveldt was next to go when he was bowled around his legs by Imraan Khan in his first over, scoring only nine runs.
Owais Shah came in and smashed Robbie Frylinck for a low six over square leg, but the bowler then held on to a skied catch from the Englishman off Cameron Delport (1/13) at deep mid-wicket for 12.
Justin Ontong made just six and was then beaten by a quicker Fidel Edwards delivery that was skied to David Miller at deep mid-wicket.
Kemp and Gray put on the highest stand of the innings with 31 added for the sixth wicket, before the captain swatted Frylinck to Chetty at mid-wicket.
The 100 came up with the first ball of the 20th over, with Gray spanking the last three deliveries for four-six-six to help them reach 120 for six.
The hosts made a blistering start to their response with Delport and Ahmed Amla reaching 30 in three overs.
But Delport attempted a needless shot towards the leg side and was caught by Shah at mid-wicket off Beuran Hendricks for 20 off nine balls.
It was 43 for one after five overs, but then came the trouble as Amla (15), Vaughn van Jaarsveld (nought) and Cody Chetty (12) all fell within the space of 13 deliveries.
The Dolphins finally reached 50 in the ninth over with Miller and Smit opting for a consolidation job.
After starting out slowly, they soon came to terms with the wicket with the 100 brought up in the 17th over via a six from Miller off Gray (2-17) over deep mid-wicket - the same stroke also raising the 50 stand from 53 balls.
A six each from each of the batsman in the 19th over bowled by Brad Hogg then took the Dolphins over the line with more than an over to spare.