Ontong said costly errors in final five overs at heart of loss by much improved Cape Cobras

A new vibrancy was present in the rejuvenated Buildnat Cape Cobras team, but they scored 20 to 30 runs too little and left too many dot balls unpunished. They also conceded too many extras, said Justin Ontong, the skipper.

He commented on the disappointing six-wicket loss to the Multiply Titans at Boland Park in Paarl on Wednesday in the T20 Challenge competition.

The Buildnat Cape Cobras, on 93 for two after 13.5 overs, managed 141 for six.

The Multiply Titans, on 90 for four after 14.4 overs, hammered 142 for four and cruised to a win with seven balls to spare. The executioner-in-chief was Albie Morkel, who blasted 34 off 16 balls.

The Cobras conceded 12 extras, which was an alarming statistic to Ontong.

“The execution of our game plans against Albie went awry,” added the captain.

“I also thought we allowed too many dot balls to go by unpunished. In the five overs between the 15th and the 20th, we could not score runs off 12 balls. That is two overs. It is completely unacceptable.”

Shukri Conrad, a TV-analyst, said the Cobras “went asleep” between the 15th and 19th over before Kieron Pollard smashed 22 runs in the final over to revive the hosts.

Ontong agreed.

He was unhappy about the way in which the hosts bowled in the final five overs, although he saw a tangible improvement in the fielding and in the energy levels in the field.

Ontong is not deflated by the loss.

He says if the team can address small problem areas successfully, they could break the duck in the T20 Challenge match against the Warriors at PPC Newlands on Friday, starting at 18:00. “I just think we were 20 to 30 runs too short,” he added.

“We might add Wayne Parnell to our squad for tomorrow,” he said on Thursday as the Cobras were completing preparations for the T20 clash against the Warriors at PPC Newlands on Friday.

Although the Cobras were weary of being too aggressive in the first ten overs and losing too many quick wickets like in the first match against the VKB Knights when they surrendered three wickets in the power play, they were probably too conservative in the first 12 overs on Wednesday at Paarl.

Yet, they made a good impression on Wednesday. Their energetic and aggressive approach as well as the determination showed on the park, were definite steps in the right direction.

Only a swashbuckling performance by Morkel and a few blunders by the middle-order with the blade at the business-end denied them the spoils.

Cebo Tsheke, with 47 from 43 balls, Pollard, with 32 runs from 19 deliveries including two sixes, and Dane Paterson, with 1-24 in 3.5 overs, were the pick of a much improved Buildnat Cape Cobras’ squad.