Pretoria Capitals defeated Paarl Royals for the second day in a row to go to the final of the first SA20 season. The first semi-final between the two teams took place on a sticky Wanderers surface following a high-scoring match in Centurion. The Capitals, who were given the opportunity to bat first, scored 153 before dismissing the opposition for 124.
But unlike the match from yesterday, this victory wasn’t a slam dunk. And a lot of that may be attributed to the Johannesburg pitch, which had something for both quicks and spinners. In the ninth over, with Phil Salt, Kusal Mendis, and acting captain Theunis de Bruyn back in the hut, the Capitals were down to 51/3. Rilee Rossouw’s expertise was necessary to save them from that situation.
Lets have a look at the scorecard of the first semi-final played between Pretoria Capitals and Paarl Royals.
The ground was giving spinners noticeable traction, so David Miller substituted Paul Stirling to bowl the 10th over. Rossouw launched a six and Colin Ingram added another four, and the offspinner was destroyed for 16 runs. In spite of the twin setback that followed when Ingram and James Neesham fell in rapid succession, it was a much-needed run-rate boost for the league champions.
While still in the game, Rossouw accelerated the innings with a late-overs onslaught on Lungi Ngidi, hammering the veteran pacer for four boundaries in the 18th over and reaching a half-century in just 37 balls. In his 10-ball 22, Eathan Bosch scored three fours and a six, while Adil Rashid smashed two fours in the penultimate over to push Pretoria over the 150-point threshold. When Jason Roy was removed by Bosch with the first ball of the chase, Paarl’s aspirations of upending the apple cart were dashed. The game was then essentially ended by Bosch, who finished off the in-form Jos Buttler with the first ball of his second over.
After saving the PowerPlay by clubbing three fours and a six, Paul Stirling was immediately LBW by Adil Rashid. After bowling 10 overs, the legspinner, who was enjoying the conditions, dismissed Dane Vilas with a googly to leave Paarl at 72/4. Two southpaws took the lead in the pursuit. Eoin Morgan, David Miller, and de Bruyn surprised everyone by giving the ball to the first-inning MVP. Rossouw won the bet when Morgan was caught at sweeper cover. Following that, wickets fell as Paarl’s pursuit waned. Anrich Nortje dismissed Shamsi in the same over to put an end to the game when Miller, the ninth man, fell for a 27-ball score, becoming the final victim. The Capitals will face the winner of the championship match between Sunrisers Eastern Cape and Joburg Super Kings in the second semifinal.