Cape Town - Sarel Erwee’s maiden century was the cornerstone of a record-breaking performance from the Dolphins as they ousted the Cape Cobras by 15 runs on the Duckworth/Lewis method in their T20 Challenge opener in Centurion on Sunday.
The left-handed opener blasted an unbeaten 103 (58 balls, 10 fours, 5 sixes) – his career-best score – as the men from KwaZulu-Natal amassed a competition record total of 231 for two after losing the toss and being asked to bat first.
The previous best total in domestic 20-over cricket was the 230 for five scored by the Titans against the Highveld Lions last year.
Dolphins captain Khaya Zondo also played his hand with a swashbuckling 67 not out (34 balls, 4 fours, 4 sixes), the sixth time he crossed 50, with the pair putting on a fixture record of 136 unbroken for the third wicket.
Erwee’s previous best score was 80 scored for KZN Inland on their way to winning the Africa T20 Cup earlier this season and he appears to have carried the same form into the franchise 20-over competition.
Dane Vilas chipped in with 32, while Morne van Wyk made 19 as the Cobras’ attack, which included the likes of Vernon Philander and Dane Paterson, was put to the sword.
Proteas pair Robbie Frylinck (1/14) and Keshav Maharaj (1/23) then accounted for Richard Levi (7) and Temba Bavuma (6), while JP Duminy (1) was run out as the Cape side were reduced to 20 for three.
Hashim Amla did his best to keep his side in the game with his unbeaten 52 (27 balls, 3 fours, 4 sixes) – his 26th 50. Surprisingly, it almost help pull off the improbable alongside Aviwe Mgijima (37 off 19).
They were 86 for three when rain arrived and the revised conditions left them needing 38 from nine balls.
There were 14 scored from the first three leaving 24 required from the final set, but Andile Phehlukwayo held his nerve to guide the Dolphins to a famous win.