McKenzie and Lions finish on a high
It was perhaps a fitting end to McKenzie's 20-year long first-class career in which he scored 19,041 runs, with 53 tons at an average of 45.77. "He's had a great career - he's a legend of the game and a good man. I'm lost for words because I've got a lump in my throat to be honest." said Lions coach Geoffrey Toyana
Lions put Warriors in and had the visitors all out for 200 in their first innings. Warriors' innings got off to a shaky start, with Chris Morris and right arm pacer Kagiso Rabada reducing them to 30 for 3. Colin Ingram and Colin Ackermann added 70 for the fourth wicket before Rabada had Ingram caught behind for a 90-ball 39 to leave Warriors at 100 for 4.
Ackerman fell after a 116-ball 50, and Warriors lost a further three wickets to end day one on 193 for 8. Viljoen cleaned up the tail as the visitors only added seven runs to their overnight total.
Andrew Birch gave Warriors a dream start with the ball, dismissing Stephen Cook off the first ball of Lions' innings. Alviro Petersen and Rassie van der Dussen combined for a 68-run second-wicket stand, and added a further 66 with McKenzie before he became Sisanda Magala's second victim, falling for 69. Two more wickets fell soon after, but McKenzie stood firm. He stitched four 50-plus partnerships with the middle and lower order and brought up his 53rd first-class century. He remained unbeaten on 203 off 394 balls as Lions declared on 464 for 9.
Trailing by 264, Warriors began with a 64-run opening stand before slumping to 123 for 5 by the 38th over. Viljoen and Morris kept striking regularly, and eventually shared eight wickets between them, including a five-for for Viljoen. Warriors were bowled out for 213, giving Lions a massive win to finish their season.
A stunning all-round performance from David Wiese helped Titans achieve an eight-wicket win over Knights at SuperSport Park and finish the season in second place. Batting at No. 7, Wiese scored a century that helped set up a big first-innings total, and picked up a six-for in Knights' first innings to bowl them out six runs short of the follow-on mark.
Starting their second innings trailing by 155, Knights only managed 178, Reeza Hendricks top-scoring with a 98-ball 74 and Marchant de Lange's four-wicket haul helping end their innings in only 51.1 overs. Chasing 24, Titans reached their target in 5.1 overs, losing two wickets to Dillon du Preez in the process.
Batting first, Titans made solid progress thanks to a half-century from the opener Theunis de Bruyn and a 150-run fourth-wicket stand between Henry Davids and Roelof van der Merwe, who smashed 89 off 98 balls, with 12 fours and three sixes. Davids was sixth out for 122 off 221 balls, having struck 16 fours and a six, and put on a further 90 runs with Wiese. Wiese went on to make 107 off 129 balls, with 15 fours and three sixes, and his dismissal prompted Titans to declare at 452 for 9.
Nine batsmen got into double figures in Knights' first innings, but only two of them made half-centuries - Michael Erlank at No. 6 and du Preez at No. 10 - as Wiese kept striking at regular intervals. Wiese had figures of 6 for 58 in the first innings, and took a further two wickets in the second to end with match figures of 8 for 109.
Cape Cobras ended their campaign on a high note, as centuries from the captain Justin Ontong and Justin Kemp set up an innings and 117-run victory against Dolphins in Pietermaritzburg. Cobras, having been inserted, rode on three big partnerships - 131 for the first wicket between Andrew Puttick (75) and Matthew Kleinveldt (97), 166 for the third between Kleinveldt and Ontong, and 188 for the fifth between Ontong and Kemp - to compile 597. Ontong hit 18 fours and a six during his 166, while Kemp scored at a much brisker pace, his 150-ball 143 featuring 18 fours and six sixes. Daryn Smit was the pick of Dolphins' bowlers, collecting 5 for 75, while Keshav Maharaj chipped in with four scalps, albeit at the cost of 168 runs.
Dolphins' reply was blighted by wickets at regular intervals from Beauran Hendricks and Dane Paterson, who shared eight wickets between them. Khaya Zondo scored a defiant 120, but none of his team-mates could manage more than 29, as Dolphins were bundled out for 245 inside 58 overs.
Cobras enforced the follow-on, and once again, Dolphins failed to get going, slumping to 8 for 4 inside three overs. Morne van Wyk led a recovery by stroking a quick 122 and adding 155 with Divan van Wyk, but once Divan was dismissed, the team again collapsed. Dolphins lost their last six wickets for 72 runs to be bowled out for 235. Paterson and Hendricks were once again among the wickets, claiming three apiece.