Standard Bank Pro20 Series January 20, 2006

Cobras clinch a thriller

A thriller that went all the way to the second last ball at Newlands in Cape Town saw the Cape Cobras ease out the Dolphins by 8 runs. The Cobras were put in to bat and made a slow start to their innings. Ian Harvey scored 13 off 16 while Andrew Puttick went to 29 off 33 balls. With the two openers out of the way JP Duminy, returning from injury, scored a flawless 67 off 50 balls. He was well assisted by the rest as the Cobras scored 102 off the final 10 overs to end on 161 for 5.

The Dolphins innings was just as slow to get off the ground, except for Kyle Smit who struck 46 off 36 balls. Unfortunately for the Dolphins, Smit could not find a willing partner. With Dale Benkenstein taking 23 off a Paul Adams over the Dolphins eased closer to the target. With the last over to be bowled the Dolphins needed 16. The first ball went for four, the second, a perfect yorker from Ian Harvey ended the Benkenstein (48 off 25) onslaught. In strode Lance Klusener needing 12 to win but two balls later he was run out by Harvey and the Cobras had won their first limited overs match of the season.

For 18,500 spectators at the Wanderers in Johannesburg the Standard Bank PRO20 match between the Lions and the Eagles turned in a complete mismatch as the Lions ran away winners by 8 wickets with still seven overs to be bowled.

Winning the toss and batting first the Warriors blazed away to 43 in the first five overs, but at the same time had lost three wickets. Justin Kreusch top scored at better than a run-a-ball but his 30 could only help the warriors to 98, bowled out in 17.2 overs. The Warriors destroyer was the Lions seamer, Eugene Moleon, who took 4 for 9 in 3.2 overs.

The target of 99 was never going to be much trouble for a strong Lions batting order and they romped away to the win in 12.5 overs, scoring 102 for the loss of 2 wickets. Stephen Cook (35 off 23) and Adam Bacher (34 off 25) put on 72 in 49 balls making it easy for Neil McKenzie and Vaughn van Jaarsveld to take the home team through to the win.

Keith Lane works for Cricinfo in South Africa