Durban – A strong display from the Warriors subjected the Hollywoodbets Dolphins to their second defeat of the Momentum One Day Cup campaign as they went down to the Eastern Cape outfit by seven wickets on Friday.
A poised innings of 82 from Dane Vilas gave the Hollywoodbets Dolphins’ innings a veneer of respectability, despite being bowled out for 207. The visitors duly chased down the target thanks to a 129-run fourth-wicket partnership by Man of the Match Colin Ackermann and top-scorer Yaseen Vallie.
Despite the loss, the Durban franchise is still in a strong position to reach the competition’s playoffs, but may need three wins from their final three matches (two against the table-topping Titans and one against second-placed Cobras) to host a semi-final.
Ackermann (56 not out from 57 balls) and Vallie (79 not out from 102) batted superbly as their well-timed chased saw them take the score from 79 for three in the 23rd over to victory in the 45th over.
Earlier, Ackermann was helped by some poor shot-selection from the Hollywoodbets Dolphins as he picked up a limited-overs career-best four for 48 which.
Khaya Zondo won the toss and opted to bat, but any joy from that success was quickly wiped away with both openers Morne van Wyk (3 runs of 4 balls) and Sarel Erwee (1 from 8) back in the changeroom before the end of the third over.
These early setbacks brought Senuran Muthusamy and Dane Vilas together and they started repairing the damage with a promising partnership of 39 runs. Vilas was brutal as he pushed the run rate up after the early loss of wickets.
With three wickets down in the ninth over, Vilas was forced to restrain his attacking instincts and he consolidated with Zondo (41 off 68 balls) until the captain was caught at point trying to reverse sweep Colin Ackermann.
Their fourth wicket partnership was worth 75 runs and gave the middle order a platform to work off, but Sibs Makhanya (3 off 10) meekly popped one straight back to Aya Gqamane to leave the Dolphins teetering on 132 for five with less than 20 overs remaining.
Five overs and 20 runs later Vilas edged Ackermann to Clyde Fortuin behind the stumps. The lanky wicketkeeper had played the Hollywoodbets Dolphins back into the game with his controlled 82 off 90 balls.
Vilas’ departure meant a lot rested on the burly shoulders of Andile Phehlukwayo and Robbie Frylinck. The pair of all-rounders started cautiously enough, but just when it looked as if they would steadily build a partnership, Phehlukwayo (24 from 27) lashed a six over midwicket and then edged the next ball off Ackermann to Smuts at slip.
Frylinck (8 off 15) was caught and bowled in Ackermann’s next over to he his last. Ackermann was then on hand in the covers an over later to pouch a weak chip off Birch by Imran Tahir (4 from 3), which left the hosts on 186 for nine and gave Birch his third wicket while conceding 41 runs.
Prenelan Subrayen and Mthokozisi Shezi put on 21 for the last wicket, with some lusty blows from Subrayen (23 not out off 34) taking the Dolphins past 200, but Shezi (2 from 11) could not hold up the other end and he was bowled by Smuts to set the Warriors a target of just over four to the over for victory.
The Hollywoodbets bowlers were under pressure from ball one and were constantly under pressure. Subrayen kept the rate down with his 10 overs going for just 30 runs, while he picked up the wicket of Lesiba Ngoepe, and Tahir collected two scalps, Gihahn Cloete and Smuts, from his ten overs which went for 46 runs.
The Hollywoodbets Dolphins will travel to Pietermaritzburg on Sunday to host the Multiply Titans in their next Momentum One Day Cup game.
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