Lions left with a huge challenge

2012-09-22 00:00

POTCHEFSTROOM — Bad light brought an early end to proceedings on the second day of the Sunfoil Series match between the bizhub Highveld Lions and the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras at Senwes Park in Potchefstroom.

The Lions got their innings off to a solid start, ending the day on 70 for one, but still trail the Cobras by a massive 473 runs.

The visitors batted on after tea as Dane Vilas moved towards his century. Nothing is given on a plate in this competition, and Vilas was left stranded as first Dane Piedt and then Beuren Hendricks were trapped leg before.

Vilas was unable to farm the strike effectively enough, but his four-hour innings of 97 (138 balls, 11 fours) put another tick behind his name as a possible replacement for Mark Boucher.

Imran Tahir was the best of the Lions’ bowlers, with five for 176 in his marathon spell of 47 overs, though he bowled too many loose deliveries and sent down a whopping 21 no-balls. Pumelela Matshikwe and Hardus Viljoen each took two wickets.

The Lions made a solid start in reply to the Cobras’ first innings total of 543. Stephen Cook and Quinton de Kock picked off a number of boundaries, raising the fifty in the thirteenth over. Left-arm seamer Beuren Hendricks broke the partnership when De Kock played all around a full delivery. Cook had contributed 25 to the total when bad light intervened twenty minutes before the scheduled close.

The Cobras had a scoring rate of 3.5 runs to the over.

The Lions still have a mountain to climb, still needing a further 324 runs just to avoid the follow-on.

With the wicket strating to act up — Rory Kleinveldt was bowled as he pulled at a short delivery that kept low — they will do well to salvage a draw.

— SuperSport.

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