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March 19, 2005
Dolphins 413 for 4 (Amla 177*, Kent 68*, Mall 66) lead Eagles 334 by 79 runs Scorecard
A career-best 177 from Dolphins captain Hashim Amla put his team into a favourable position at the end of the third day of the SuperSport Series final against the Eagles at Goodyear Park, Bloemfontein on Saturday.
Amla and Dale Benkenstein resumed for the Dolphins on 215 for 3 and, with the pitch easing up and the ball coming on to the bat, the batting conditions were ideal for the team to post a big first innings lead. Benkenstein was caught behind for 38 off the bowling of Victor Mpitsang in the tenth over of the morning: the only wicket to fall in the day as rain brought a premature end to the proceedings.
During the 64 overs that were possible, Amla and Jon Kent took full advantage of the conditions to put on 171 runs for the fifth wicket with Amla going past his career best of 159 to end undefeated on 177. His 24 boundaries off 374 deliveries showed that he has the temperament for the longer version of the game. Kent scored his fourth half-century of the series off 118 balls as the two batted through to the early end of play.
The Dolphins now lead the Eagles by 79 runs with six wickets in hand and still two days of play remaining. Lifting the run rate should be the prime objective of the remaining batsmen with a result still firmly on the cards.