Gritty Elgar steals the show at Kingsmead

2011-10-17 00:00

A GRITTY century by Knights opening batsman Dean Elgar, who was named man of the match, stole the show at Kingsmead yesterday in what was the Dolphins’ best chance to win their first match of the SuperSport Series.

Needing 295 runs to win the match, the Knights came in and faced a heavy barrage of fast bowling by Kyle Abbott and Friedel de Wet, but the batsmen seemed untroubled at the crease.

Elgar (114) played a patient innings, reaching his ton off 185 balls, which included 13 boundaries. He was well supported by Reeza Hendricks (30) and former South African middle order stalwart Boeta Dippenaar (69).

Although the Dolphins did make a game of it after taking the wickets of Elgar and Dippenaar, they were about 40 runs short of taking the game out of the Knights’ reach.

The Dolphins bowlers were left frustrated for most of the afternoon with emotions running so high at one stage that Imran Tahir had to be calmed down by vice-captain Daryn Smit after an LBW appeal was turned down.

The top performer with the ball for the Dolphins was De Wet (3/60), with the rest of the bowlers taking a wicket each.

With one eye on the match against the Cobras, which begins in Cape Town on Thursday, Dolphins coach Graham Ford was circumspect about his side’s performance in their last home match before the break in the competition.

“Obviously we are disappointed, but a bad session yesterday [Saturday] and a bad session early on the last day meant that we were going to struggle to win,” said Ford. He added that the fight that the bowlers put in at the end was heartening.

“Even when the Knights only had to score 20 runs to win the match, our bowlers fought hard to try and win,” he said.

After solid performances on the first two days, some woeful batting on day three saw the Dolphins relinquish the hold on the advantage that they had held.

Coming to the crease at 16/0 on Saturday, the Dolphins lost Imraan Khan (4) in the fourth over of the day after he chased a delivery off Quinton Friend.

Under cloudy skies the ball was moving around considerably, but this seemingly had no effect on Divan van Wyk, who was settling in. Ahmed Amla (16) chased a ball that was on his legs and he edged it to the wicketkeeper.

Van Wyk (29) played one shot too many and was caught at long leg off after a mistimed hook shot.

Glenn Addicott (8), Loots Bosman (15) and Cameron Delport (2) fell soon afterwards.

The only consolation for the Dolphins was a last-wicket partnership between Tahir (16) and De Wet (17), who sought to chase the bowlers rather than just surrender their wickets.

Just when it seemed as if De Wet and Tahir would be top scorers in the Dolphins second innings, Tahir was caught behind.

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