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December 16, 2004
The Titans and the Eagles made sure of a home semi-final as the Standard Bank Cup drew towards its end. The Dolphins beat Western Province Boland while a bonus point made sure that the Eagles would host a home semi-final.
Titans 190 for 7 (Cullinan 64) beat Eagles 154 by 36 runs
Batting first on a slow pitch at Bloemfontein, Daryll Cullinan struck a quick 64 to help the Titans to 190 for 7 in the alloted 45 overs. Struggling to build momentum, the Titans batsmen had to push hard to reach a respectable total. Their task was made difficult by Jacob Malao, who claimed 3 for 37 on his first outing for the Eagles.
A target of 191 should have been easy for the top-ranked Eagles, but once again Ethy Mbhalati displayed his fine touch by taking the first two wickets and ending with 3 for 37 in his nine overs. Bowled out for 154 in 39.4 overs, the Eagles barely secured the bonus point to ensure that they stay at the top of the table in the round-robin stage of the competition.
Dolphins 223 for 6 (Wingfield 85, Benkenstein 59) beat Western Province Boland 169 for 8 by 18 runs (D/L Method)
The Dolphins qualified for the semi-finals after beating Western Province Boland by 18 runs in a rain-affected match at Kingsmead.
Batting first on winning the toss, the Dolphins put together 223 for 6 after a 146-run partnership between Wade Wingfield, who scored a career-best 85, and the consistent Dale Benkenstein (59). Coming together at 36 for 2, the two put the Dolphins into a winning position in a game that was always going to be affected by rain.
An interruption during the supper break meant that Western Province Boland only had 33 overs to achieve the target of 188. With wickets falling at regular intervals, Province were denied even a sniff of victory as the bowlers kept them well below the Duckworth/Lewis target.
The win ensured that the Dolphins would go through to the semi-finals while Western Province Boland needed to win their remaining three fixtures. They will compete with the Warriors for the final spot, as the bottom-of-the-table Lions have no chance of progressing any further.
What's wrong with their cricket? Well, what isn't?