Border rout Eastern Province
Border made short work of Eastern Province on the second day of their season opener at Port Elizabeth, winning by an innings and eight runs as EP collapsed to 113 all out just before tea. Earlier, Border extended their first-innings lead to 121 when they declared at 297 for 8 after the mandatory 85 overs. Border's captain, Murray Ranger (57 not out) and Lundi Mbane (48) put on 94 for the sixth wicket as Border pushed towards bonus points. The Border seamer, Phaphama Fojela, then took 4 for 33 as EP collapsed with only Sithembile Makongolo (56) showing any resistance.
A maiden first-class hundred from Craig Thyssen (157) and 97 from Riel de Kock allowed Free State to declare at 478 for 8 at Bloemfontein, a lead of 236. At the close, Gauteng had progressed to 82 for 0, when bad light stopped play nine overs early. Stephen Cook was undefeated on 56.
Fighting innings from Griqualand West's captain, Wendell Bossenger (62) and the debutant Frans Holtzhausen (52) enabled the visitors to recover from 94 for 5 to 241 all out, still 140 behind the North West total of 381. At stumps the lead had been extended to 375 as North West finished the day on 234 for 3, thanks to 96 not out from Mohammad Akoojee. With the pitch becoming more batsman-friendly a draw could be on the cards.
Despite taking a very experienced team to Benoni, Northerns have their backs against the wall after being bowled out for 134 and taking a three-run lead into the second innings against neighbours, Easterns. The Easterns bowlers shared the wickets with Morne Morkel and Brendon Reddy taking three and Siraag Abrahams four. An undefeated 117 by Andre Seymore then raised the Easterns hopes as they reached 201 for 8 at the end of the day's play. A feature of the innings was the use of nine bowlers by Northerns in an attempt to gain the upper hand.
Keith Lane works for Cricinfo in South Africa