Cape Town - Half-centuries by Sarel Erwee and Senuran Muthusamy helped the Dolphins edge into control after the opening day of their 4-Day Domestic Series encounter against the Knights in Kimberley on Monday.
The visitors were bowled out for 268, but a wicket each by Kerwin Mungroo (1/14) and Ethan Bosch (1/2) then reduced the hosts to 24 for two by the close at the Diamond Oval.
It meant the KwaZulu-Natal side remained 244 runs ahead and they will be satisfied after an indifferent batting performance after winning the toss and asking the home side to bowl first.
Vaughn van Jaarsveld fell third ball of the match for a duck, while Cody Chetty followed in the fifth over for 12, both to Proteas paceman Duanne Olivier.
From 13 for two, Erwee and Muthusamy rebuilt with a stand of 130 for the third wicket. Opener Erwee was eventually removed for an innings-high 68 (157 balls, 11 fours), while all-rounder Muthusamy struck 62 (111 balls, 10 fours).
Both were removed by Tshepo Ntuli (2/65), with the rest of the wickets falling at regular intervals to Ryan McLaren (2/31) and pick of the bowlers Olivier, who claimed four for 50.
The Dolphins were all out in 88.4 overs with the onus then falling on their bowlers to bring them back into the game.
And Bosch and Mungroo responded by removing Luthando Mnyanda (1) and Ntuli (1) inside 2.1 overs, before Grant Mokoena (12) and Keegan Petersen (10) took the Knights to the close without further damage.