Maharaj sets the tone for Dolphins

2015-03-06 00:00

CAPE TOWN — Keshav Maharaj took six wickets as the Cape Cobras were skittled for just 156 before the Dolphins reached 158-2 at stumps on the first day of their Sunfoil Series match at Sahara Park New­lands in Cape Town yesterday.

Left-arm spinner Maharaj ended with career-best figures of 6-58 off 14.5 overs as the Cobras, after winning the toss and electing to bat, were shot out in just 43.5 overs with Omphile Ramela top scoring with 48.

The Dolphins’ reply was led by the opening pair of Imraan Khan, who scored a bright 58 off 86 balls with 10 fours, and Divan van Wyk, who scored a more sedate 51 off 100 deliveries with six fours and a six.

The Dolphins made an impressive start to their innings thanks to a 100-run stand, that came in good time, between Khan and Divan van Wyk.

The pair scored at four runs to the over with Khan bringing up his fifty off 69 balls before he was trapped leg-before by left-arm seamer Mthokozisi Shezi and Divan van Wyk was dismissed by paceman Rory Kleinveldt.

Cody Chetty (11 not out) and Khaya Zondo (28 not out) were the not out batsmen at the close of play with the Dolphins holding a two-run lead on the first innings.

However, the day belonged to Maharaj who also went past the mark of 200 first-class wickets during the Cobras’ first innings.

The Cobras were in early trouble after fast bowler Matthew Pillans, fresh off a 10-wicket match haul against the Knights, removed Stiaan van Zyl (4).

Richard Levi had made a fast start, with two fours off the first two balls of the match, but he was dismissed for 12 off 19 balls when he edged a delivery from paceman Daryn Dupavillon through to keeper Morné van Wyk to leave the Cobras on 20-2.

Andrew Puttick and Ramela tried to steady the innings with a third-wicket stand of 36 off nine overs.

But the left-handed Puttick, after scoring a rapid 21 runs off 30 balls, was bowled by Maharaj as the Cobras slipped to 56-3.

Matters did not improve for the hosts as they added just nine runs to their total before seamer Calvin Savage had Pieter Malan (5) caught behind.

The hosts were in real trouble and their situation worsened when Maharaj bowled Dane Vilas (1) with the Cobras having stumbled to 68-5.

Sybrand Engelbrecht (9) was dismissed shortly after lunch, trapped leg-before by Maharaj, before Ramela was dismissed by the same bowler to leave the score on 112-7.

Dane Piedt (24) and Kleinveldt (22) then put on 40 runs for the eighth wicket but the innings ended in a hurry as the hosts lost their last three wickets for just four runs.

Pillans ended with 2-33.

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