HARDUS VILJOEN and Dwaine Pretorius took four wickets apiece to give the bizhub Highveld Lions a first-innings advantage over the Sunfoil Dolphins in spite of their own low score on the second day of Sunfoil Series action at Bidvest Wanderers.
The Lions appeared to have fallen for a middling total when Calvin Savage and Mathew Pillans ran through their lower order to dismiss them for 214, with Savage recording career-best figures of 5 for 62.
But Viljoen grabbed three wickets in his opening spell, Pumelela Matshikwe helped out with the middle order, and Pretorius struck at various times in the innings as the Dolphins were bowled out for 141.
The Lions went on to make a steady start to their second innings, going to stumps on 54 for one with Rassie van der Dussen on 22 and Devon Conway on 18.
The home side were delicately poised on 169 for five in their first innings at the start of the day, but lost both Pretorius and Bavuma (57) early on as Savage completed his maiden five-wicket haul in first-class cricket.
The Lions tail did their best to hang in thereafter, but once the second new ball was taken, Pillans mopped up the last three wickets to finish with 4 for 44.
The positivity built up in the field by the Dolphins didn’t take long to dissipate, as David Miller (62) and Savage (44) were the only batsmen capable of holding the Lions bowlers off.
Miller came to the crease in the seventh over with the Dolphins score on 14 for three, which became 38 for six as Viljoen and Matshikwe (2 for 26) made further inroads.
The left-hander finally found a willing ally in Savage, and the pair put on 89 for the seventh wicket in more than a session to inch the score towards some sort of respectability.
However, before they could get there, Pretorius (4 for 37) struck twice to remove both of the set batsmen, and then shared the last two wickets with Viljoen (4 for 44) to wrap up the Dolphins innings in just 52.2 overs.
Savage trapped Dominic Hendricks lbw as the Lions began their second innings, but Van der Dussen and Conway extended the lead to 127 by the time stumps were called.