A maiden first-class century by Aviwe Mgijima helped ensure there were no final day jitters by the WSB Cape Cobras as they held out for a draw in their opening Sunfoil Series fixture against the champion VKB Knights in Bloemfontein on Friday.
In what has been a high-scoring fixture at the Mangaung Oval, Standard Bank Proteas batsman Hashim Amla fell 11 runs shy of a double century with the visitors batting out the final day to reach 567 for six by the close.
It completed a good fightback after the Cape side made a miserable start to 2017/18 by collapsing to 159 all out in their first innings and then watching as the home side piled on the second highest total in franchise history.
The champions posted 623 for four declared – with a record four centurions in Theunis de Bruyn (195), Keegan Petersen (141), Werner Coetsee (105 not out) and Rudi Second (101 not out).
The Cobras started the final day on 304 for three and still trailing by 160, but Amla and Mgijima ensured the game was saved.
Justin Ontong was out early for 128 (193 balls, 16 fours 2 sixes), before the pair put on a fixture record 165 for the fifth wicket.
Amla, who was on 121 overnight, eventually fell for 189 (344 balls, 22 fours, 3 sixes), with Mgijima going on to make 112 (184 balls, 13 fours, 1 six) – easily beating his previous best score of 74 – as the Cobras held on.
Shadley van Schalkwyk (3/95) and Eddie Leie (3/152) ended with three wickets each.