Standard Bank PRO20 Series April 29, 2004

Eagles thrash Titans to reach final

Wisden Cricinfo staff

Eagles 48 for 3 beat Titans 47 (Deacon 3-10, Tshabalala 3-7) by 7 wickets
Scorecard

The Eagles caused the biggest upset of the season by comprehensively beating the Titans at SuperSport Park to advance to the final of the Standard Bank PRO20 Series.

After winning the toss and batting first, the only moment of joy for the Titans came off the first ball of the match, when Jacques Rudolph hit a four. He was run out off the next ball, and from there their evening deteriorated. Daryll Cullinan top-scored with 9 out of a score of 47 - by far the lowest total of the tournament. Only two fours were struck in the entire innings, and both came in the first over. The Eagles did bowl well, with Cliff Deacon and Thandi Tshabalala picking up three wickets each and Deon Kruis's opening spell of four overs only going for 12, but some of the shot selection from the Titans batsmen left a lot to be desired. To add to their frustration, a power failure left the ground in darkness for an hour, and when play resumed, the Titans, already in trouble at 23 for 3, had lost four overs.

The Titans' hopes of defending their meagre total were briefly raised when the Eagles lost two early wickets with only six on the board. However, the experience of Boeta Dippenaar (17 not out) proved invaluable as he and Loots Bosman (24) steered them to victory. Bosman did lose his head when trying to go for glory with the scores tied, but by then the contest had already been settled.

The Eagles will now meet Eastern Cape in the final. Eastern Cape had earlier beaten Western Province Boland by seven wickets in the first semi-final.

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