SAA Provincial Challenge, Round Eight, 3rd day November 25, 2005

Easterns pull off a remarkable victory

Easterns pulled off a remarkable four-wicket win by successfully chasing 340 against Free State. After declaring overnight on 126 for 1, Free State would have been confident of winning after they had bowled Easterns out cheaply for 165 in the first innings. A magnificent 134 not out from Jaco Booysen, to go with his 40 in the first innings, took Easterns to the target in 83.3 overs.

Having been put under pressure by Eastern Province from the end of day one, Boland could not manage to overcome a bad pitch, sticky sightscreens and a power failure and eventually fell 22-runs short of their 197-run target. The highlight of the match was Juan Theron who took 6 for 47 to go with his 3 for 12 in the first innings.

At Kimberley, Griqualand West declared on 264 for 8, setting Gauteng a target of 264. Adrian McLaren scored 131, and Wendell Bossenger scored 53, and took Griqualand to a strong position, allowing them to set an almost ungettable target. Johnson Mafa had kept Gauteng in the game taking 4 for 79. Gauteng made steady progress and was on the way to victory when a spell of 4 for 79 from Nathan Arthur put a halt to the run chase. A run-a-ball 55 from Douglas Gain and 66 not out off 46 balls from Diaan van Wyk was at the end not enough and Gauteng fell 24 runs short.

Keith Lane works for Cricinfo in South Africa