There was once again nothing to report in terms of a win for the Multiply Titans, but they did produce a splendid final-day effort that was only nullified by the rain in their Sunfoil Series match against the Warriors at Sahara Willowmoore Park in Benoni on Monday.
Although the match ended in a draw, there was plenty of action in the 67.4 overs of play that the bad weather allowed, starting with the first ball of the day.
AB de Villiers, who had looked set for a big one as he cruised to 32 not out off just 26 balls on the third afternoon, was trapped lbw by Simon Harmer and then his partner in a quickfire 49-run third-wicket stand, Heinrich Klaasen, was caught behind for 23 in the second over of the day, bowled by paceman Anrich Nortje.
But veterans Farhaan Behardien (59*) and Henry Davids (45) have rescued the Titans from varying states of disrepair already this season and they laid the platform for a declaration half-an-hour before lunch with their stand of 96 in 21.4 overs.
The Titans called it quits in their second innings on 220 for six, setting a tantalising target of 281 in 76 overs for the Warriors.
Providing that the weather played ball, it was a fine declaration by Klaasen that gave both sides a chance of victory. The Warriors needed to score at 3.69 runs per over to win, challenging but not impossible if a batsman got in and went big.
Having 76 overs meant the Titans could well contemplate bowling the Warriors out and that became the more likely scenario when fast bowler Migael Pretorius took wickets with his first two balls of the innings.
Opener Ed Moore was trapped lbw for a duck and that was followed by the big wicket of Colin Ackermann, the leading run-scorer in last season’s four-day competition, who was caught behind, also without scoring.
Malusi Siboto then sent back the other opener, Gihahn Cloete, bowling him for 30, and when Jerry Nqolo (6), Jon-Jon Smuts (9) and Harmer (8) all fell in quick succession, it was turning into a black day for the Warriors on 91 for six.
But Yaseen Vallie, who batted for 160 minutes in scoring 55 not out, and Sisanda Magala, who was bowled by Pretorius for 29, ending an hour-long stay at the crease just as the weather closed in, defied the Titans bowlers for long enough to force the draw.
Pretorius finished with three for 30 while Alfred Mothoa, who had claimed the wickets of Smuts and Harmer in a fine spell of two for 10 in five overs, now tops the Titans bowling averages with seven wickets at 21.00.