AN AGGRESSIVE 96 not out by David Miller saw the Dolphins snatch a three-wicket victory over the Warriors in an exciting One-day Cup cricket fixture at St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth on Wednesday.
The Dolphins were set a readjusted target of 244 to win from 45 overs and were seemingly staring down the barrel with 28 needed off the final two overs and only three wickets in hand.
However, Miller stepped up to the plate and produced a characteristic cameo with the help of Kyle Abbott.
The duo took 24 off Andrew Birch, who bowled the penultimate over, with Miller scoring 17 of them.
That left four needed off Rusty Theron’s final over with Miller dispatching the first delivery to the fence for the eighth four of his innings.
He also hit three sixes in his 85 balls to help his team retain their unbeaten status.
The Dolphins’ cause was aided earlier with 61 from Vaughn van Jaarsveld and 37 from Morne van Wyk.
The Warriors’ total of 251 for eight was built around an unbeaten 96 from Proteas’ left-hander Colin Ingram and a half-century by Christiaan Jonker.
The Warriors had won the toss earlier and were soon in trouble, with both openers Jon-Jon Smuts and Luthando Mnyanda dismissed for only 17 runs on the board.
However, a solid third-wicket partnership of 84 off 121 balls between Ingram and Ryan Bailey helped get the home side back on track.
When Bailey was run out for 39, Davy Jacobs entered the fray with some intent.
He hit two quick boundaries before he became fast bowler Craig Alexander’s third victim for only 12, and the Warriors were placed neither here nor there at 122 for four off 28 overs.
Last season’s star with the bat for the Warriors, Jonker, provided just the impetus the Warriors needed by thumping 52 off only 49 balls with five fours and a six.
Jonker too became a victim of Alexander, as did Simon Harmer after him, to give the former Highveld Lions’ speedster five of the first six wickets to fall.
Alexander finished the innings with a career-best haul of five for 52 eclipsing the 4/47 he took for the Lions against the Knights in Johannesburg two seasons ago.