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Cricket | Momentum One-Day Cup 2018/19

Vaughn van Jaarsveld © Gallo Images

Dolphins clinch run-fest

The Hollywoodbets Dolphins – the co-holders of the trophy – beat the bizhub Highveld Lions by 19 runs in a Momentum One-Day Cup run-fest at a steaming City Oval in Pietermaritzburg on Saturday.

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In a match in which a total of 665 runs were scored on a blameless surface – 44 short of the all-time record aggregate – two magnificent centuries were notched by man of the match Vaughn van Jaarsveld (124) for the Dolphins and Reeza Hendricks (130) for the Lions, while Dane Vilas, David Miller and Rassie van der Dussen all scored impressive 50s.

The Lions were faced with a formidable victory target of 343 for victory after the Dolphins had compiled the biggest total – 342/6 – ever scored in 50-over cricket at the ground. The Lions also knew that the difficulty of their task was measured by the fact that the biggest successful run chase at the ground was 275.

They comfortably overhauled that mark, finishing on 323/9, but their brave chase still left them short of victory. Nevertheless the teams were responsible for the top two biggest totals ever scored in 50-over cricket at the ground.

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The key to the Lions’ chase was a third-wicket partnership of 121 between Hendricks and Van der Dussen. When the total had reached 191/2 in the 33rd over, there were realistic hopes that the visitors could pull off a remarkable feat. But Imran Tahir, who otherwise had a disappointing day, conceding 71 in his 10 overs, captured the all-important wicket of Van der Dussen for 51 when the new Protea got a leading edge to a leg-side flick, offering the bowler a comfortable caught and bowled chance.

Hendricks, exhausted by the heat, was the next to go, holing out tamely to long-off for a superb 130 (117 balls, 12x4s, 1x6) and the Lions never really threatened after that though they kept scoring at a quick rate through to the final ball.


One of the key differences between the teams was that the Dolphins scored 42 runs off their last two overs, with Miller and Robbie Frylinck in full cry. The Lions needed three runs less, but their tailenders were understandably unable to summon the kind of firepower required.

Earlier, after the Lions had won the toss and put the Dolphins into bat, they made a good start when former Dolphin Craig Alexander had Morne van Wyk caught behind by wicketkeeper Mangaliso Mosehle off the first ball he faced in the opening over.

This was only a temporary setback for the home team, however, as Van Jaarsveld, in particular, got stuck into the Lions’ bowling, driving and pulling with great power and superb timing as he dominated the first century of his 204-run partnership with Dane Vilas before going to his seventh Momentum Cup hundred in 84 balls.

Although Vilas, remarkably playing his first game for the Dolphins this season, was outscored by his partner early on, he gradually built up momentum until he nearly matched Van Jaarsveld in the second half of their partnership, the franchise’s biggest against the Lions.


Eventually, however, Vilas was bowled for 81, going down the wicket and playing a wild stroke to Wiaan Mulder in the 33rd over. Van Jaarsveld followed in the next over, caught in the deep off Nandre Burger for a splendid 124 (102 balls, 14x4s, 2x6s).

For half-a-dozen overs or so it looked as if the Lions were getting back into the match as Miller and Zondo progressed in singles against some disciplined bowling by Mulder in particular. But after Zondo was caught at “45” in the 39th over, top-edging a sweep off Bjorn Fortuin, it was the signal for Miller to press the accelerator.

Although there were no fours in the left-hander’s 50, he struck four huge sixes and then two fours in the final over to finish with a rush. And when Robbie Frylinck struck the last two balls of Dwaine Pretorius’s final over for the maximum, the Lions faced a task that was just beyond them.

It was a tough day for the bowlers, but paceman Mulder for the Lions and offspinner Prenelan Subrayen (7-0-36-2) for the Dolphins could be proud of their efforts on an unforgiving pitch.

HOLLYWOODBETS DOLPHINS: Vaughn van Jaarsveld, Morne van Wyk, Dane Vilas (w/k), David Miller, Khaya Zondo (capt), Andile Phehlukwayo, Prenelan Subrayen, Keshav Maharaj, Rob Frylinck, Mthokozisi Shezi, Imran Tahir

BIZHUB HIGHVELD LIONS: Reeza Hendricks, Rassie van der Dussen, Nandre Burger, Bjorn Fortuin, Mangaliso Mosehle (w/k), Wiaan Mulder, Nono Pongolo, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rapulana (capt), Ryan Rickelton, Craig Alexander


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