A disappointed Ashwell Prince gave a sobering perspective on the heartbreak that the World Sports Betting Cape Cobras experienced by just missing out to the bizhub Highveld Lions in the race for the Four-Day Franchise Series crown.

The World Sports Betting Cape Cobras were leading until the final half an hour of the competition before Wihan Lubbe bowled the Lions to an 84-run victory against the Warriors.

The World Sports Betting Cape Cobras got bowling bonus points by restricting the Hollywoodbets Dolphins to 310 and then struck 523 for seven (declared). In the second innings, the hosts compiled 358 for two in Pietermaritzburg.

“The pitch on which we played against the Dolphins was a very disappointing one. We deserve credit that we dismissed them for 310 in the first innings. But half of their team threw their wickets away and they could have scored 600 on that pitch in the first innings,” said Prince.

“It says much about the pitch because we had a world-class bowler in Vernon Philander, one of the best in the competition in Dane Paterson, the leading wicket-taker in Dane Piedt and an in-form George Linde and we could not bowl them out in the second innings. They struck 358 for two,” Prince says.

“We expected the Lions to win and we went to Pietermaritzburg with the goal of winning, but we could not do it on that pitch.”

The World Sports Betting Cape Cobras won six of their matches and captured 178 wickets in the competition. They scored 10 centuries and 27 half-centuries in the series.

“I think we have at least half a dozen of young batsmen who could play for the Proteas in the future,” Prince said.

“The injury to Tladi Bokako was a setback and we had to sign Akhona Mnyaka. Mnyaka has underlined his talent and he is one for the future.

“In general, the Lions had more depth than us and they picked Kagiso Rapulana, Delano Potgieter and Nandre Burger with success from the senior provincial squad. Our squad was stretched,” Prince said.

“Nevertheless, I am very proud of the way we played, although it was not a fairytale ending,” Prince said.