Border slip up on day four of U17 week while unbeaten Gauteng march on
It was a disappointing loss for the hosts, their third of the competition after they lost a time cricket match on first innings and a T20 match while winning one of each as well.
A below par batting effort was the main cause as they were unable to bat out their overs, being bowled out for 211 I 44.5 overs, with Free State's bowling department doing a decent enough job, however they were aided by some woeful Border running between the wickets as they had no less than four run outs.
Free State, who have battled so far over the week, then made relatively light work of the target, cruising home with 41 balls to spare.
Batting first Border were unable to get any decent partnerships at the top of the order as they slipped to 67/3, with Tunyiswa Bayolise (11), captain Akhanya Rebe (11) and Matthew Ferrant (3) al out cheaply.
Opener Stuart Els finally found a willing partner in the dependable Emihle Mgoqi and they shared the innings best stand of 49 to take Border past the hundred run mark.
Both then fell shortly after each other, Mgoqi for 29 and Els for a well played 59.
Wickets continued to fall as Border slipped to 159/7 before Aiden van Wyk and Ethan Boucher managed a 40-run partnership to get Border on the cusp of 200, only for Boucher to be run out for a quikfire 25.
The innings ended quickly after that with van Wyk stranded unbeaten on 38 and Border on a below par 211.
Free State's best bowler was Tshediso Kheswa who claimed 2/53 in his 10 overs.
Free State's reply got off to a bad start as they lost two early wickets leaving them on 29/2.
However two big stands of 67 between opener Danwich Beukes and Marco de Kock, and 82 between Beukes and Calvin Flanegan took Free State took the game firmly away from Border.
By the time Beukes became the fourth wicket to fall for a very impressive 85, Free State only needed 34 to win and Flanegan (65 not out) and Aphiwe Nqweni (13 not out) took them home easily.
In other matches on the day unbeaten Gauteng won an entertaining clash against Boland by 14-runs with both Gauteng's Bryce Parsons (107) and Boland's Ruan Terblanche (105) notching centuries, while Parsons also starred with the ball claiming 2/24 to help his side to a tight win.
Kwa Zulu-Natal Inland claimed a comfortable win over eight wicket win over Eastern Cape Invitational after bowling them out for 197 thanks to Mike Schlanders (4/28) and Cameron Hollaway (3/34), while Robert McGaw (100) and Nathaniel Benjamin (80 not out) starred with the bat.
Half centuries by Ximus du Plooy (85) Kofi Essel-Mensah (56) and Tristan Janse van Rensburg (56)then helped Northerns overcome Eastern Province by a slender 15-run margin as they scored 259/7, with Albert Wells then picking up 3/40 with the ball to help knock over EP.
KwaZulu-Natal then upset Western Province, clinching an impressive 37-run win thanks to Juandre Viljoen scoring an unbeaten 69 with the bat to get them to 222/9, while WP Guy Sheena claimed 4/35.
Samkelo Gasa then bagged 3/22 as Province were bowled out for just 185.
Lastly Neil Bothma hit 86 and Saahil Khan took 3/8 as Easterns beat Limpopo by 88 runs.