Migael Pretorius hit two sixes and then a four off the extra ball of the last over as the Knights kept alive their chances of qualifying for the playoffs.
Six Gun Grill Cape Cobras 167/5 (Hamza 77*, Verreynne 45. Von Berg 2/23)
VKB Knights 169/7 (Van Tonder 42)
Knights won by 3 wickets
JOHANNESBURG – Migael Pretorius hit two sixes and then a four off the extra ball of the last over as the Knights kept alive their chances of qualifying for the playoffs of the Betway T20 Challenge at Kingsmead on Monday.
Needing 19 runs to win off the last over, the Cobras’s Ziyaad Abrahams bowled a couple of good yorkers early and dismissed Grant Mokoena off the third ball.
That put Pretorius on strike with 16 needed and he clouted the fourth ball, for six and then hit the next delivery even further for another.
Abrahams, feeling the pressure then bowled a no ball, and Pretorius finished the game, as well as the Cobras’ chances in the competition, by hitting the last ball through square leg, beating a despairing dive by George Linde on the boundary.
“At the end I only needed a boundary, not a six, so the pressure is all on the bowler,” Pretorius, who’s been one of the breakout players on the domestic scene this summer, told SuperSport.
“The field was up on the off side so he had to be straight, and I just hit the gap.”
For the Cobras, this loss will sting, but they only have themselves to blame. It has been a wretched season for that franchise, who have found ways to lose matches regardless of the format.
On Monday, one of the players who has struggled for them this season, finally came good, with Zubayr Hamza playing the kind of innings which his talent demands.
He was patient, but also got a lot of help up front from the Knights who were very poor with the new ball, missing the lengths and lines regularly.
Hamza’s innings lasted 49 balls and included 10 fours and two sixes. His partnership of 88 for the third wicket with Kyle Verrynne set the Cobras up with a competitive total on a pitch that was slightly quicker than the others used thus far in the competition.
Hamza’s should have been a match winning knock too, but the Cobras started shooting themselves in the foot from the get go in attempting to defend their total.
Corbin Bosch’s first two deliveries were wides that went to the boundary giving the Knight’s 10 runs without a legitimate ball bowled.
It was a trend that continued throughout the innings with the Cobras providing 27 runs to the Knights by way of extras – the third highest score in the innings –18 of those wides.
Raynard van Tonder, batting for the first time since December, made a lovely 42 off 40 balls, but the Cobras had still kept themselves ahead of the game by taking wickets regularly.
Then came Pretorius, the no ball, and all too familiar outcome for the Cobras.