Jansen stars as Sunrisers crush Royals
Sunrisers Eastern Cape all-rounder Marco Jansen was at his destructive best as he hit a career-best 71 from 31 balls to help his side to a comfortable 44-run bonus point win over Paarl Royals in their SA20 fixture at Boland Park on Friday.
The lanky right-hander struck four boundaries and six maximums catapulting the Sunrisers Eastern Cape to a competitive 208 for four after Sunrisers skipper Aiden Markram had won the toss and opted to bat first.
He also did the job with the ball, claiming 2/34 in four overs to help restrict the home side to 164/7 in reply.
The win cemented second position at least for the defending champions with the possibility of finishing top if they win against the same opposition in Gqeberha on Sunday.
After that, they clash in Qualifier One against Durban’s Super Giants in Cape Town on Tuesday.
Chasing 209 for victory, the Royals’ English duo of Jos Buttler and Jason Roy made perfect use of the fielding restrictions in the power play, scoring 63 runs without loss after six overs, 28 runs more, and one wicket less than where the Sunrisers were at the same stage.
Liam Dawson dismissed Roy (32), who hit a boundary and three sixes, before lobbing the ball straight back to the left-arm spinner, who completed a comfortable catch.
The Sunrisers' bowlers then managed to stem the flow of runs with the home side reaching the halfway mark on 84/1 as Buttler reached a third half-century of the competition.
Buttler lost his wicket when he picked out Tom Abell on the boundary off Beyers Swanepoel, having made 64 from 45 balls including six fours and two sixes and with his side on 111/2 in the 13th over.
That wicket saw a mini-collapse for the Royals, as they lost their next five wickets for the addition of 38 runs, as Miller (14), Evan Jones (2), Mitchell van Buuren (9), Dane Vilas (9), and Wihan Lubbe (7) fell between overs 14 and 19.
Lungi Ngidi hit two sixes in the final over to finish unbeaten on 13 alongside Bjorn Fortuin who ended on nine not out, as they too secured a spot in the playoffs.
Earlier, Jansen top-scored for the visitors with his second SA20 half-century having been promoted up the order to bat at number four.
He and Tristan Stubbs , who came together in the 16th over, shared an unbeaten 87 runs for the fifth wicket, which came off just 37 balls as the Royals bowling attack conceded 89 runs in their last five overs.
Jordan Hermann and Abell got the ball rolling when they shared 77 runs for the second wicket, scoring 36 and 46 respectively.
Royals medium pacer Jones picked up the wickets of Markram  and Hermann to finish with figures of 2/51 from four overs while Wihan Lubbe, who took the wicket of Dawid Malan  and Tabraiz Shamsi, who removed Abell, returned figures of 1/7 and 1/33 respectively from five overs.
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