Reeza Hendricks smashed his second consecutive T20 century to set the foundation for Jozi Stars' bonus-point victory, a win that took them to No. 3 in the standings. With Chris Gayle set to join the side, this victory couldn't have been sweeter.
Their 81-run win over Nelson Mandela Bay Giants was the biggest margin of victory in terms of runs this season. The result manifested because of a sorry batting show from the Giants, who were bowled out for 92 in a chase of 174 on a slightly tricky surface that aided the slower bowlers as the evening progressed.
Giants approached the chase cautiously at the start, and weren't allowed to get away when they tried bringing out the big shots. Once the stranglehold was well and truly on, they committed hara-kiri by playing outrageous shots - swiping and swinging across the line blindly - and eventually falling to tame dismissals.
Where even Hendricks, initially slow to get off the blocks in the Powerplay, was willing to spend time, the Giants batsmen went with an ambitious approach after limping to 24 for 2 in seven overs. With the asking rate climbing all the time, their high-risk game played right into the hands of Jozi Stars. Dwaine Pretorious picked three wickets, while legspinner Edie Leie and Beuran Hendricks picked two apiece.
The Stars elected to bat and started slowly, but held their shape. When the loose balls arrived, they took full toll. The first sign of them breaking the deadlock came in the fifth over, off Chris Morris, with Hendricks laying into the bowling; Stars picked three fours and six in an over that went for 19. From there on, Hendricks didn't look back.
Hendricks did a bulk of the scoring in a 61-run opening stand with Ryan Rickelton, who was out to Aaron Phangiso for 21. The brakes were on briefly after that with Rassie van der Duseen struggling for timing. To his credit, he fought through pockets of frustration that seemed to have minimal effect on an in-form Hendricks. Patiently, he set himself up for the end-overs and was along the way helped by some inconsistent bowling, particularly by Morris, whose four overs went for 43.
Imran Tahir pulled things back briefly in the middle overs, but didn't have much support from the other bowlers. Eventually a score of 173, fuelled later by a Dane Vilas cameo, proved more than adequate on the face of some reckless batting.
Kagiso Rabada's pace felled JJ Smuts, who anticipated a beamer but was bowled off a yorker to start a procession. Ben Duckett's array of failed reverse sweeps and paddles only added to the frustration and when he fell for a 17-ball 11, Giants were all but out at 39 for 5 in the 10th over. Only five batsmen crossed double digits, with Aaron Phangiso's 17 being the highest, the result a foregone conclusion even before the halfway mark of the chase.