POTCHEFSTROOM: The Hollywoodbets Dolphins and the Imperial Lions were crowned joint-Momentum One-Day Cup champions for 2020/21 after their final showdown was rained out after 55.2 overs in Potchefstroom on Friday.
The match had been moved to the reserve day after Thursday’s scheduled clash had to be abandoned without a ball being bowled following wet weather at Senwes Park, which was hosting the competition in a bio-secure environment (BSE).
The heavy rain had at least cleared sufficiently to get a 45-over per side game going with the Lions batting first after they lost the toss and being restricted to 225 for seven.
In reply, the defending champions reached 37 for two in 10.2 overs, before the skies opened again forcing the players off one final time in what has been a tournament severely affected by the elements.
In the end, it was the rain that was the ultimate winner as the Dolphins, winners of the title last year when the competition prematurely ended by the coronavirus pandemic, and Lions sharing the first trophy on offer for the season.
As for the game itself, the discipled KwaZulu-Natal side were lead admirably with the ball by Ethan Bosch as his four for 41 in nine overs strangled the Lions to a modest 226 target.
Dominic Hendricks (65 off 74 balls, 3 fours) and Nicky van den Bergh (56 off 75 balls, 1 four) were the two mainstays with the bat for Wandile Gwavu’s side – their 116-run fourth-wicket partnership proving pivotal after they slipped to 56 for three.
But the lower order then offered little leaving Imraan Khan’s charges favourites at halfway.
A strong start by the Lions, and in particular Sisanda Magala (2/17), ensured that the Johannesburg-based side were not going to go down without a fight, before rain intervened to draw the curtain on the game and the competition in the North West.