Johann Louw and a trio of top-order centurions, RichardcLevi, Stiaan van Zyl and Justin Ontong, put the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras in a commanding position in the Sunfoil Series match against the Chevrolet Knights at Chevrolet Park in Bloemfontein as the hosts, facing a first-innings deficit of 225 runs, limped to 60 for four at stumps on Friday.
Louw finished with 3-23 in six overs. He had Gihahn Cloete caught by Andrew Puttick for a duck thanks to superb late away-swing in the fourth over. He added Rudi Second’s scalp in the sixth over when he bowled him through the proverbial gate with an in-swinger for four as the Chevrolet
Knights slipped to 6 for two.
Louw, the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras’ leading wicket-taker in Sunfoil Series matches this season, added to the host’s agony by trapping Ryan Bailey in front for 8 to reduce the Chevrolet Knights to 28 for three.
Then Beuran Hendricks removed night-watchman Shadley van Schalkwyk for a single.
Levi, Van Zyl and Ontong scored tons to propel the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras to the Sunfoil Series trophy as they put the demoralized Chevrolet Knights attack to the sword. The Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras secured 10.06 bonus points, by adding 6.04 batting points to the four they achieved with the ball on Thursday.
The Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras resumed on 104 for one on Friday after restricting the hosts to 191 in their first innings.
They demolished the attack by scoring centuries. Levi contributed 121, Ontong 109 and Van Zyl 148 in catapulting the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras to 416 for six declared, a 225-run first-innings lead.
Levi led the onslaught on Friday morning and was the senior partner in a 165-run stand with Van Zyl off 273 balls. His fifth first-class century was characterized by several square drives and pulls. He perished shortly before the lunch break when he was superbly bowled by Shadley van Schalkwyk for 121. He smashed 22 fours and faced 159 balls.
Ontong and Van Zyl joined forces on 201 for two and featured in a record-partnership for the visitors for the third wicket.
Ontong and Van Zyl added 200 runs in 204 minutes for the third wicket as the attack lost their interest, focus and motivation against the fluent pair. Ontong’s timing through the covers was impeccable. He also pulled well and used the slog-sweep with devastating effect.
Dropped at mid-off by Johan van der Wath off Ryan McLaren with his score on 36, he moved swiftly to his century off 123 balls with fifteen fours and two sixes. He was caught behind off Obus Pienaar for 109.
A mini-collapse followed as the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras lost their intensity apart from the obvious goal of accompanying Van Zyl to his 150.
The 25-year old Van Zyl reached his eleventh first-class ton off 221 balls with a well-timed on-drive over long-on for a six off Shadley van Schalkwyk. He was equally effective on both the off and the on-side, and underlined his national credentials with his second successive century.
Van Zyl was finally out on 148 as he was caught behind off Van der Wath. He faced 303 balls and hit 24 fours and a six.
Chevrolet Knights: Johan van der Wath (capt), Gihahn Cloete, Rudi Second, Rilee Rossouw, Ryan Bailey, Obus Pienaar, Ryan McLaren, Werner Coetsee, Dillon du Preez, Malusi Siboto, Shadley van Schalkwyk.
Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras: Justin Ontong (capt), Andrew Puttick, Richard Levi, Stiaan van Zyl, Dane Vilas, Yaseen Vallie, Justin Kemp, Robin Peterson, Rory Kleinveldt, Johann Louw, Beuran Hendricks.