Knights make comeback

2011-12-17 20:38

Bloemfontein - Boeta Dippenaar struck his 34th first-class century to put the Chevrolet Knights in command after day three of their SuperSport Series match against the Nashua Titans at Chevrolet Park in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

The former Proteas batsman finished unbeaten on 109 off 247 and shared in a 138 run stand with Obus Pienaar (83 from 134) to see the hosts to the close on 270 for five, a lead of 247 with a draw looking the most likely outcome

There was also a strong display with the ball by Knights fast bowler Quinton Friend, whose five for 73 helped bowl the Free Staters back into contention after they came into the day chasing the game.

Four of his wickets came in the morning when the Titans lost five wickets for 40 to be rolled over for 461, much less than they would have hoped for.

They started the day in a strong position on 416 for five, just 22 behind the home side’s 438, with Farhaan Behardien well set on 140.

But he added just one to his overnight total and was out for 141 when Friend managed to entice an edge from the 11th ball of the day that was grabbed by Dippenaar at slip.

Albie Morkel (four) followed when he was dismissed by Dillon du Preez (three for 100), with Friend wasting little time in getting rid of Hardus Viljoen (four) and Rowan Richards (nought).

Wiese was the last man standing unbeaten on 23, but the Titans had thrown away a real position of strength.

However, they hit back by removing Dean Elgar for a second ball duck when he was snapped up by Paul Harris.

Rilee Rossouw, who made 145 in the first innings, managed just four second time around before he was caught by Viljoen, with Richards again the destroyer as the hosts fell to 18 for two.

Reeza Hendricks and Dippenaar took their side past 50 in the 14th over as they reached lunch still two wickets down.

Resuming on 54 for two afterwards, they took the partnership to 69, before Hendricks was caught by Martin van Jaarsveld off Viljoen for 42.

Dippenaar added a further 45 with Ryan Bailey (25), taking the Knights past 100 in the process.

But David Wiese ended the stand when he trapped Bailey leg before wicket, leaving Dippenaar and Pienaar to negotiate their side into tea without further damage.

They started it at 148 for four after the break and batted admirably in a session that saw 122 runs scored for the loss of just the one wicket.

The Knights went past 200 in the 59th over, with Pienaar going past his 50 in 79 balls, followed by the century stand in 183 deliveries.

Dippenaar got to his ton in 207 balls, a knock that included 16 boundaries, and just as it seemed they were going to take things to the close, Richards (three for 47) grabbed the breakthrough leaving Friend to face two balls before the close.