Bailey, Harmer inspire Warriors victory

Kyle Abbott and Daryn Smit built on Vaughn van Jaarsveld's counterattacking half-century to help Dolphins edge Titans by eight runs in the opening match of the Ram Slam T20 Challenge at Newlands.

Dolphins batted first, but started rather abjectly as both openers were back in the hut by the end of the second over. Cody Chetty and David Miller followed the pair soon after as Dolphins struggled at 37 for 4 after eight overs. Van Jaarsveld, batting at No.4, joined forces with Khaya Zondo as the duo built a match-turning partnership of 117 off 72 balls to take Dolphins to a sizable 154 for 4. Van Jaarsveld produced his best T20 innings, scoring 82 off 56 balls, while Zondo chipped in with an unbeaten 33-ball 41. Their stand was also the best for the fifth wicket in South African domestic T20 cricket.

Facing a stiff chase, Titans didn't start too well and they continually lost wickets throughout the innings. They were at 23 for 3 at one point, with Abbott getting two of the batsmen caught behind. Smit also chipped in with two wickets as Titans were veering off course. David Wiese entered at 64 for 5 when Faf du Plessis departed, and clubbed 42 off 24 balls, a knock which included four fours and two sixes. However, his hitting exploits were not able to get Titans close, as they ended up falling just eight runs short as their overs came to an end.

A spirited display by Warriors, led by Ryan Bailey and Simon Harmer, ensured they got off to a winning start in the Ram Slam T20 Challenge despite posting a middling total against Lions at Newlands.

Bailey and Harmer got together in the 10th over after double strikes from Chris Morris and Aaron Phangiso had left Warriors reeling at 53 for 6. They took a bit of time early on, and the method was vindicated when they clattered off 53 runs in the final four overs. Bailey muscled five fours and two sixes en route to a match-winning T20 half-century, while Harmer contributed a 26-ball 38 to take Warriors to an unlikely 140 at the end of 20 overs.

An opening partnership of 42 in a little under eight overs had set Lions on course to overhaul the 141-run target, but left-arm spinner JJ Smuts usurped the momentum with three wickets in as many overs. Further trouble lay ahead when the search for a quick single caused a fatal misunderstanding between Alviro Petersen and Gulam Bodi. Both batsmen were stuck at the same end and Davy Jacobs had time to remedy a fumble, amble to the non-strikers,' and gently tip the bails off to cap a slump that left Lions at to 74 for 6.

Morris swung his bat with a bit of success but the cameo did not last and neither did the Lions tail as they were dismissed well short of the target.

Cobras fast bowler Beuran Hendricks took a career best 6 for 26 to lead his team to a nine-run victory against Knights. Chasing 154, Knights were given a solid start by opener Reeza Hendricks, who went on to make 60 off 45 balls. The chase fell away after him, though, with none of his team-mates passing 20. They went from 94 for 2 to 144 for 9, with Beuran Hendricks taking three wickets in four balls, having had 14 to defend in the final over.

After choosing to bat, Cobras had recovered from losing Richard Levi for a duck through a 67-run stand for the second wicket between South African internationals. Hashim Amla was unbeaten on a half-century, while Graeme Smith made 47. Their run-rate picked up after 15 overs, when they were 93 for 4, and Cobras took 60 off the last five overs to post 153. Amla went from 27 off 30 balls to an unbeaten 59 off 43 deliveries.

Knights 2nd innings Partnerships

1st31RR HendricksRR Rossouw
2nd36D ElgarRR Hendricks
3rd27PJ van BiljonRR Hendricks
4th11RR HendricksAJ Pienaar
5th5AJ PienaarDS Rosier
6th9R McLarenDS Rosier
7th23JJ van der WathR McLaren
8th1N BojeJJ van der Wath
9th1N BojeLN Mosena