The Nashua Dolphins cruised to 117 for two and an eight-wicket win over the bizhub Highveld Lions in their Standard Bank Pro20 match at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead in Durban on Sunday.
The Dolphins made a good start to their innings as Hashim Amla and HD Ackerman put on 67 runs for the first wicket before Amla was clean bowled by seamer Robbie Fylinck in the 11th over.
Amla departed the scene for 28 off 32 balls and in the next over Ackerman was bowled, for 34 off 36 balls, by left-arm spinner Aaron Phangiso.
Despite the loss of the two quick wickets the opening stand had done its job and Ahmed Amla and Grant Rowley were under very little pressure as they took their side to victory with six balls of their innings remaining.
Rowley was the more aggressive of the pair and, towards the end of the Dolphins’ innings, he played some delightful leg-side shots for boundaries to end unbeaten on 33 off 23 balls
Amla was not out on 16 as he and Rowley put on an unbroken 50-run third-wicket partnership.
Earlier a maiden half-century from Dane Vilas saw the Lions to a disappointing 112 for eight.
Vilas scored 55 not out off 51 balls as he played a lone-hand against the Dolphins’ bowlers with the next highest score for the Lions being 15 from Neil McKenzie.
After being put into bat the Lions made a poor start as they slipped to 12 for three in four overs.
Fast bowler Quinton Friend made the initial breakthrough, picking up a wicket in the first over of the match, before left-arm seamer Yusuf Abdulla took two wickets in two balls in the fourth over.
Abdulla picked up his third wicket when McKenzie dragged a delivery on to his stumps to leave the Lions on 27 for four.
Thando Bula then fell to a marvellous catch at cover by Ahmed Amla, off the bowling of seamer Johan Louw, to reduce the Lions to 44 for five in nine overs.
Vilas found a willing partner in Werner Coetsee (12) and the pair put on 45 runs for the sixth wicket before Coetsee was caught on the deep mid-wicket boundary by Jon Kent off the bowling of seamer Alfonso Thomas.
Abdulla finished with figures of three for 28 while Thomas claimed two for 17. Louw was impressive as he conceded 13 runs off four overs while picking up two wickets.