Cape Town - Rowan Richards captured his fifth career five-wicket haul, including his 100th first-class wicket, to give the Titans a decisive edge over the Cape Cobras in their top-of-the-log SuperSport Series clash at Boland Park in Paarl on Thursday.
Scorecard: Dolphins v Warriors
Scorecard: Cobras v Titans
Scorecard: Lions v KnightsThe left-handed swing bowler has had a wonderful debut season for the Titans and has captured 20 wickets in five matches.
Ironically, he was still playing for Western Province in the CSA three-day competition last season, topping his side’s bowling averages.
With Richards taking five wickets and his opening partner Albie Morkel three, the Cobras were shot out for 199 after winning the toss. Only Robin Peterson (58 not out off 49 balls with 10 fours and a six) and Richard Levi (64 off 71 balls with 10 fours) were able to offer much resistance.
Morkel was sent to hospital after hurting his wrist but later tweeted that the x-ray has revealed no fracture.
Peterson was again to the fore with the ball, capturing the first two Titans’ wickets to fall and finishing the day with figures of 2/48 in overs.
The Titans closed at 157/3 to be in a dominant position with a deficit of 42 runs and seven wickets in hand.
These include the two heavyweight batsmen at the crease, Martin van Jaarsveld and Jacques Rudolph. The former is on 69 (104 balls, 8 fours and 2 sixes) and in the process has passed the landmark of 18 000 first-class runs.
Elsewhere, Vaughn van Jaarsveld made the only century of the day at Kingsmead in Durban when he reached three figures for the 10th time in his first-class career. His innings of 106 off 178 balls with 16 fours and a six was just what the Dolphins needed on the first day under new coach Lance Klusener.
It was the best day they have had for some time and they finished on 269/5. Captain Imraan Khan was the other main contributor with 92 (206 balls, 9 fours and a six).
Simon Harmer was the most successful bowler for the Warriors (3/69 in 32 overs) and he needs one more to take him to 100 in first-class cricket. He is for the time being at least the leading wicket-taker in this season’s competition.
In the other match that affects the top end of the log at the Wanderers the Knights were restricted to 250/7 in a day’s play that was shortened to 81 overs. The Knights looked to be in trouble at 122/5 but they produced one of their typical lower-order fightbacks with Johan van der Wath and Werner Coetsee having added an unbeaten 58 for the eighth wicket by the close of play.
The wickets were shared around with Pumelela Matshikwe and Chris Morris having taken two each.