Following a delay in play due to lightning and later rain, the Titans will have to chase 247 runs to win in 42 overs.
Ontong came in at with the Cobras in a spot of bother at 91/3 in the 25th over, and proceeded to stroke the Titans attack all around Willowmoore Park to give his team’s innings much-needed impetus on what was an uneven, two-paced pitch with variable bounce.
The right-hander from Paarl played himself in before launching an astonishing assault on Titans all-rounder Grant Thomson, hitting him for 22 runs in one over. But Thomson had the last laugh as Ontong went for one big shot too many and lost his balance, which saw wicket-keeper Mangaliso Mosehle take off the bails in a flash to stump Ontong for 65 off just 53 balls (5x4, 2x6).
Then it was time for Cobras gloveman Dane Vilas to continue the onslaught, and he smashed four fours and three sixes at the end of the innings to finish on 46 not out off just 23 balls.
Earlier, left-handers Omphile Ramela and Stiaan van Zyl rescued Paul Adams’ team from a precarious 33/2 following the loss of openers Wayne Parnell (six) and Andrew Puttick (22). Ramela and Van Zyl put on a 58-run third-wicket partnership, but they lost their momentum when lightning and then some rain forced the players off the field.
They lost their rhythm and timing upon their return, and Van Zyl was trapped lbw by Henry Davids for 28 (36 balls, 2x4).
Ramela reached his 10th limited-overs half-century in a workmanlike innings, but then gave it away as he offered Junior Dala a caught-and-bowled chance to be out for 53 off 79 balls (2x4, 1x6).
But Adams will be pleased with his batting unit’s effort, especially Ontong and Vilas’ late pyrotechnics on a sticky wicket.
Original source: Ontong, Vilas power Cobras