The off-break bowler bagged four for 42 in an excellent 25 overs to help restrict the visitors to 224 for five on a day when around an hour of play was lost due to afternoon rain. But they did resume afterwards until bad light intervened after 81.2 overs were bowled.
The Cobras were held together by an unbeaten 90 from veteran batsman Justin Ontong, who faced 170 deliveries and struck 10 fours and a six.
That after his captain, Omphile Ramela, had won the toss and chose to bat first, a decision that may have been questioned when they fell to 45 for two following the losses of Simon Khomari (eight) and Andrew Puttick (33).
But Ontong shared a 69-run stand with Ramela, who made 32, with the hosts continuing to chip away.
Sisanda Magala took the only other wicket to fall on day one for figures of one for 40.
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