Andrew Puttick goes big again

East London - Multi-century partnerships were the order of the day when the fourth round of SuperSport Series matches started around the country on Thursday.

The biggest was the opening stand of 283 between Andrew Puttick and Alistair Gray for the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras against the Chevrolet Warriors at Buffalo Park, East London.

Gray was dismissed for 126 (307 balls, 17 fours) off what turned out to be the last ball of the day.

Earlier in the season Puttick shared a stand of 333 with Graeme Smith, also for the first wicket, against the bizhub Highveld Lions.

This latest effort included Puttick’s 16th first-class century, his 7 000th first-class run and his 400th run of the current SuperSport Series campaign. Ashwell Prince of the Chevrolet Warriors is the only other batsman to have passed that latter mark so far this summer.

The Cobras, who won the toss, finished the day on 283/1 with Puttick unbeaten on 151 (269 balls, 17 fours and a six). Lyall Meyer was the only one of the 6 bowlers employed by the Warriors to enjoy any success.

There was a similar story at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium where Neil McKenzie and Vaughn van Jaarsveld plundered a fourth-wicket partnership of 217 in 44.4 overs for the bizhub Highveld Lions against the Nashua Dolphins.

The Dolphins who won the toss must have been quite pleased to have the Lions three down for 85 runs but Van Jaarsveld (126 off only 138 balls with 15 fours and 2 sixes) and McKenzie both scored their first centuries of the season to turn the game in favour of the home side. It was Van Jaarsveld’s 8th century and McKenzie’s 36th.

After Van Jaarsveld’s dismissal the Lions continued to press home their advantage in another substantial stand between McKenzie and Zander de Bruyn. The latter was dismissed shortly before the close for 40 after a partnership of 82 for the fifth wicket leaving the Lions with the very substantial total of 391/5 at the end of the first day’s play.

McKenzie was unbeaten on 141 (229 balls, 17 fours). He needs another 112 runs to take his career total to the 14 000 mark.

The Nashua Titans put their batting woes of the last two weekend’s behind them thanks to a stand of 201 runs for the fifth wicket at the Diamond Oval, Kimberley, between Farhaan Behardien (142 off 215 balls with 24 fours and a six) and Henry Davids that was only broken shortly before the close of play. It was Behardien’s fifth career century.

The Titans, who won the toss against the Chevrolet Knights, finished the day on 307/5 with Davids unbeaten on 73 (190 balls, 11 fours). This was a heartening recovery after they had been 106/4 at one stage.
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