CRICKET / de Kock and Symes steer the team home; Mumbai & Chennai knocked out

South African team Highveld Lions assured itself of a place in the semifinals of the Champions League T20 tournament with a five-wicket win over Yorkshire here on Saturday. Quinton de Kock stroked a calm 32 off 35 balls as his team overhauled Yorkshire’s score of 131 for seven with relative ease. This victory effectively dashed the hopes of both IPL teams, defending champion Mumbai Indian and Chennai Super Kings.

The Lions, with three wins from four games, has now joined Sydney Sixers as the other team from Group B in the semi—finals. Both teams have 12 points in the bag. A victory for Yorkshire against Lions could have opened up the group, but now Mumbai and Chennai have become the third IPL team after reigning IPL champion Kolkata Knight Riders to crash out of the event.

Yorkshire, after being put in to bat, made a fine start with England international Andrew Gale (21) and former Australian opener Phil Jaques (31) taking their team to 50 for no loss by the eighth over. But the downfall began soon enough for the English team. Gale’s wicket opened the floodgates for the South African side as it captured three wickets while giving away only 13 runs.

Yorkshire’s middle-order woes continued, with the exception of Adam Lyth who scored 21 off 17 balls. The rest failed to take advantage of a good start and managed only 131.

In reply, the Lions lost both its openers Alviro Petersen (19) and Gulam Bodi (8) early. But the young and impressive de Kock played a mature innings to take his team closer to the target. But a rash shot proved to be his downfall and suddenly Yorkshire was in with a chance of making a comeback into the game.

A quick-fire 25 off 12 balls from Dwaine Pretorious again put the Lions in the ascendency. But in his zeal to score quickly, Pretorious too was dismissed prematurely. After a small stutter, Jean Symes’ late flourish (27 off 22) helped his team across the line.

Needing 20 off 12 balls, Symes hit Oliver Hannon-Dalby for a six and a four to pick 14 runs off the penultimate over. Symes then finished off the match in style, clobbering Steven Patterson for back-to-back boundaries.

The scores:

Yorkshire: A. Gale c Tsolekile b Pretorius 21, P. Jaques b Petersen 31, J. Root c Tanvir b Phangiso 5, A. Lyth c Nannes b Morris 21, G. Ballance c Nannes b Phangiso 17, A. Rashid lbw b Tanvir 8, D. Hodgson (not out) 10, A. Rafiq c Phangiso b Tanvir 4; Extras: (lb-4, w-9, nb-1): 14; Total (for seven wkts. in 20 overs): 131.

Fall of wickets: 1-54, 2-60, 3-67, 4-100, 5-111, 6-118, 7-131.

Lions bowling: Tanvir 4-1-25-2, Nannes 4-0-30-0, Morris 4-0-25-1, Phangiso 4-0-23-2, Petersen 2-0-11-1, Pretorius 2-0-13-1.

Highveld Lions: A. Petersen c Hodgson b Hannon-Dalby 19, G. Bodi lbw b Patterson 8, Q. de Kock c Hodgson b Wardlaw 32, N. McKenzie lbw b Rafiq 13, D. Pretorius c sub b Patterson 25, J. Symes (not out) 27, T. Tsolekile (not out) 4; Extras: (lb-1, w-5): 6; Total (for five wkts. in 19.2 overs): 134.

Fall of wickets: 1-27, 2-31, 3-69, 4-89, 5-107.

Yorkshire bowling: Wardlaw 4-1-23-1, Patterson 3.2-0-21-2, Hannon-Dalby 4-0-35-1, Root 1-0-4-0, Rafiq 4-0-14-1, Rashid 3-0-36-0.

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