Hendricks double-strike puts Cobras in control
Two late wickets from Beuran Hendricks reduced the Nashua Titans to 65 for two in their second innings at stumps on day two of their Sunfoil Series match against the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras at Sahara Willowmoore Park in Benoni on Friday, still trailing the visitors by 114 runs.
Opening batsman Francois le Clus offered the most resistance for the home side, as he reached the close of play undefeated on 42, while fellow opener Heino Kuhn made 14.
The Cobras, who won the toss and elected to field first, bowled the Titans out for 194 on day one to claim all four bowling bonus points, with Johann Louw and Beuran Hendricks picking up four and three wickets respectively.
In reply, the visitors were all out for 373 shortly after tea on day two thanks mainly to an innings of 123 by Stiaan van Zyl, although he received able support from Justin Kemp who made 73.
Farhaan Behardien was the pick of the Titans’ bowlers with figures of three for 57.
The visitors’ efforts with the bat earned them 5.08 bonus points, while the Titans were able to grab maximum points in the bowling stakes.
The Cobras began the final session on 348 for eight, and enjoyed a healthy lead of 154 with Kemp and Hendricks returning to the crease on 57 and one not out respectively. The latter was unable to add to his tea-time tally, and when he fell 15 deliveries after the interval, Kemp and last man Charl Langeveldt (nine not out) went on the attack.
A flurry of boundaries and a big six from Kemp ensued, before he was bowled by Rowan Richards in the 102nd over to end the Cobras’ first innings with a lead of 179.
Titans’ openers Kuhn and le Clus then looked to put on an improved display with the bat after failing in the first innings, and the pair negotiated the new-ball period courageously.
Louw and Hendricks, who’d starred with the ball in the first innings, were unable to make a breakthrough, and the Titans reached 36 without loss after 12 overs.
However, Hendricks, who was brought back for a second spell, made the breakthrough on the stroke of drinks as he had Kuhn clean bowled.
The wicket proved to be the first of a crucial double strike, as he managed to disturb Titans’ skipper Henry Davids’ furniture for a duck just two overs later, and the home side were suddenly under severe pressure at 43 for two – still 136 runs in arrears.
Le Clus remained defiant however, and he and new man Behardien (five not out) were able to see out the final 10 overs before stumps.
Le Clus struck a fine boundary off the penultimate delivery of the day, and the budding partnership of 22 between the pair will at least have given their team some hope of setting the Cobras a competitive total with eight wickets still in hand.
The Titans earned a total of 5.88 bonus points, while the Cobras accumulated a healthy 9.08 bonus points.
Report Day 1
NASHUA TITANS: Heino Kuhn, Francois le Clus, Henry Davids (capt), Graeme van Buuren, Mangaliso Mosehle (wk), Farhaan Behardien, Roelof van der Merwe, Shaun von Berg, CJ de Villiers, Juan de Villiers, Rowan Richards
NASHUA MOBILE CAPE COBRAS: Andrew Puttick, Alistair Gray, Stiaan van Zyl, Justin Ontong (capt), Yaseen Vallie, Dane Vilas (wk), Justin Kemp, Johann Louw, Dane Piedt, Beuran Hendricks, Charl Langeveldt