Vilas shines for Cobras

2011-10-28 18:33

Johannesburg - Dane Vilas once again showed his appetite for the Nashua Titans attack as he played a match-defining innings for the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras on the second day of their SuperSport Series encounter at Sahara Willowmoore Park on Friday.

Vilas scored his career-best unbeaten double century against the Titans in the colours of the bizhub Highveld Lions two seasons ago and followed this up with an unbeaten 161 (165 balls, 24 fours and 2 sixes) in the colours of the Cobras.

As can be seen from these statistics Vilas did not just take the game away from the Titans but did it quickly in spite of having to shepherd Johann Louw in an invaluable last-wicket partnership of 71 in 17 overs.

The Titans must have been hoping to restrict the Cobras to a total in the region of 250 and a lead of less than 150 when they had them seven down for 215. But they had reckoned without Vilas who found reliable partners in Vernon Philander who helped add 103 for the eighth wicket in only 20 overs and then Louw.

It meant that the Titans trailed by a mammoth 282 on the first innings and had an enormous task just to bat themselves out of trouble. The task became even bigger when Jacques Rudolph fell cheaply for the second time in the match before Henry Davids (56 off 88 balls, 10 fours) and Farhaan Behardien (50 off 62 balls, 8 fours) steadied the Titans for the second time in the match.

Their third wicket partnership was worth 103 in 22 overs but they were both dismissed before bad light brought an early close with the Titans still 132 runs adrift with six wickets in hand.

Philander completed a good all-round effort by following up his invaluable innings with figures of 3/37 in 11 overs.

The Chevrolet Knights, chasing the Titans at the top of the log, are also in a strong position against the Chevrolet Warriors at the halfway stage of their match, having taken a lead of 143 at the halfway stage at the Diamond Oval.

The Warriors made an awful start to their first innings, losing both of their openers without a run on the board. They then appeared to stabilise their position through a third wicket partnership of 107 in 33 overs between Colin Ingram (41 off 100 balls, 6 fours) and Ashwell Prince (61 off 109 balls, 9 fours). But the dismissal of both batsmen in successive overs from Quinton Friend sparked a dreadful collapse that saw them slump to 114/7 in a matter of 5 overs with Friend receiving excellent support from Johannes van der Wath.

Even an act of defiance from Andrew Birch (59 off 67 balls, 10 fours) and a last wicket partnership of 41 could not get the Warriors out of a hole. Friend (4/71) and Van der Wath (4/37) were the destroyers in chief.

The Knights reached the close at 71/0 for an overall lead of 214 runs.