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Parnell century scripts aggressive Cobras win

File photo - Wayne Parnell's unbeaten hundred secured a first win for Cape Cobras AFP

Cape Cobras marched to a commanding six-wicket win in Outdshoorn against Lions after they chased down the target of 237 inside 44 overs on the final day with an aggressive and unbeaten century from Wayne Parnell. He struck the game's only century as well as contributed with the ball to take Cobras to their first win in six matches.

Once Lions were dismissed for 383 on the final day, Cobras had 46 overs to chase and did so by scoring at nearly 5.50 runs per over on the back of Parnell's 103 off 131 balls that featured seven fours and two sixes. Once their first wicket fell at the score of 74, a 125-run second-wicket partnership between Parnell and Stiaan van Zyl (64 off 65) took them to 199, before van Zyl was dismissed by Aaron Phangiso. By then, Cobras were on top and they completed the win soon after Parnell reached only his second first-class ton, and he smashed the winning runs with a four.

Lions were on the backfoot in the game's first session when they crumbled to 44 for 6 in under 23 overs after being asked to bat. Dwaine Pretorius scored 35 at No. 6, but with his dismissal, Lions soon folded for 126. Parnell broke the opening stand and collected three of the last five wickets to finish with 4 for 26.

Cobras overcame Lions' score in reply, but not without their own collapse. Opener Omphile Ramela struck a patient 75 even as the rest of the top five batsmen scored 15 runs together. After Ramela steered them till the score of 159, Aviwe Mgijima scored 73 and an unbeaten 48 off 135 from Dane Piedt helped them put on 273. Pretorius and Willem Mulder took three wickets each.

Trailing by 147, Lions put on a stronger batting performance second time around, but after another collapse, as Nicky van den Bergh's 93 helped his team recover from 48 for 4. He shared 97 runs with Pretorius (62) for the fifth wicket to nearly wipe off the deficit but was removed by Piedt. A late surge from the tailenders led by Bjorn Fortuin (72) took Lions to 383, helped by Hardus Viljoen's 46, but it was not enough to stop Cobras.

Kingsmead saw a tame draw between Dolphins and Warriors after inclement weather resulted in a curtailed second day, and a third day that had to be called off without a ball being bowled. In the 180.4 overs the match saw, Dolphins' Vaughn van Jaarsveld, Divan van Wyk and left-arm spinner Senuran Muthusamy delivered standout performances. Warriors batsman Colin Ackermann, who scored 81 in the first innings, was their only notable show.

Asked to bat, Warriors' innings consisted of a 102-run partnership between two batting collapses. After their openers put on 47 runs, Warriors soon saw themselves at 99 for 4. Ackermann stitched a century stand for the fifth wicket with Somila Seyibokwe (54) to take Warriors past 200, but with Seyibokwe's dismissal, a second Warriors collapse saw them all out for 231. Muthusamy accounted for Ackermann and three other lower-order wickets as he returned figures of 4 for 49.

Dolphins, who finished the first day on 39 for no loss, then batted through spells of poor weather to take a comfortable lead. Van Jaarsveld struck his 15th first-class century, scoring 154 while putting together consecutive century partnerships. He added 145 runs for the second wicket with van Wyk (95) and another 116 runs with Cody Chetty. By the time van Jaarsveld - whose century earned him the Player-of-the-Match award - was dismissed in the 86th over, the Dolphins lead had gone past 100 and the teams agreed on a draw after playing 40 overs on the last day. Dolphins earned 9.22 points while Warriors got only 3.62 points from the match.

In Bloemfontein, a dangerous pitch after two days of rain saw the match between Knights and Titans being abandoned without a ball being bowled.