Cape Town - The Dolphins campaign in the CSA T20 Challenge ended on a gloomy afternoon in Durban as they lost to the Knights by nine wickets in a match truncated to eight overs a side by intermittent rain.
A 60 over stand between Patrick Kruger (34 off 19 balls) and skipper Dave Miller (18 off 13 balls) saw the visitors gradually take the result away from the home side, eventually winning the contest by the flattering 9 wicket margin with two overs to spare.
After Robbie Frylinck conceded 20 runs in the second over, the Dolphins were desperately looking for ways to fight themselves back into the contest, but the composure of Kruger and Miller ensured they were always in the driving seats.
The Dolphins innings started with a typically measured first two overs from Morne van Wyk and Cameron Delport, but when they came off for rain after 2,2 over, their 7/0 suddenly put them under pressure as the prospect of a drastically shortened game looked likely.
After the lengthy rain delay the match was revised to eight overs a side, and the Dolphins top order looked to pull the trigger straight after the resumption of play at 5pm, but in their haste wickets fell at regular intervals, despite three dropped chances in the field.
Khaya Zondo came in with the team teetering at 37/5, but then climbed into Corné Dry’s final over, hitting three big sixes to help the final tally balloon to 59, with the Duckworth Lewis formula adjusting the Knights target to 65.
Dillon du Preez earned the bowler award for a two over spell that yielded a miserly 9/1.
The loss brings to an end the Dolphins challenge for a berth in the T20 Challenge qualifier in a season that has seen them produce several encouraging performances, posting massive scores but somehow coming away on the losing side of key contests.
“We have learnt a lot,” said coach Grant Morgan. “We have posted some excellent totals, but we have seen sides chase us down fearlessly. And that is something that we can learn to do better.”