Cape Town - Duanne Olivier and Ottniel Baartman shared seven wickets as the Knights stunned the Dolphins by five wickets on day three of their 4-Day Domestic Series clash in Kimberley on Wednesday.
The pair helped the hosts shoot out the visitors for a woeful 135, before Luthando Mnyanda showed nerves of steel with an invaluable 62 (119 balls, 10 fours) in a nervous chase of 138.
It completed a superb win for the Central Franchise at the Diamond Oval and came less than a week after a poor batting display of their own led to defeat in the opening match of their season against the Cape Cobras in Cape Town.
Olivier and Baartman initiated the momentum in the game by grabbing four for 35 and three for 30 respectively as the Dolphins fell from their overnight 48 for two to 135 all out.
The KwaZulu-Natal side barely got going on the third morning before losing innings top-scorer Sarel Erwee for 33 to Baartman. The right-arm seamer then got rid of Senuran Muthusamy (15) and Dane Vilas (6) either side of Ryan McLaren capturing the wicket of nightwatchman Kerwin Mungroo for 13. It meant the Dolphins suddenly found themselves on 85 for six.
Things hardly improved when Olivier returned to the attack and mopped up the tail to end with match figures of eight for 85 – the away side all out in 42.2 overs.
Mnyanda and Grant Mokoena (19) gave the Knights a steady start with a 41-run opening stand, before a triple-strike by Muthusamy (3/30) reduced the Dolphins to 60 for four. Then came the crucial partnership that sealed the game. It was headed by Mnyanda, with McLaren contributing an unbeaten 40 as the pair added 75 for the fifth wicket to clinch the win.