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Wakatu off the mark

The TPL competition just got a little bit more interesting.  While leading team Dolphins had a bye the bottom-placed Wakatu chose this round to upset the Falcons in Blenheim and secure their first win.  Stoke Nayland required some Kendall Hodson heroics to overcome a staunch Nelson College effort while ACOB easily defeated WTTU to gain valuable points in a crucial matchup.

 Nelson College v Stoke Nayland – Although Stoke Nayland were the favorites over Nelson College at Ngawhatu it finished up being a very close-run encounter.  Nelson College made a steady start as both openers displayed watchful intent.  Once Jonty Raxworthy and Fergus Hughes were dismissed however it heralded something of a mini-collapse as normal transmission was resumed for the dominant Stoke Nayland attack.  While they had to work hard in the conditions for their rewards, work hard they did. Dylan Eginton fared best of the bowlers but they all toiled manfully. Damian Aitken displayed some typical defiance but at six wickets down for just over 100 it appeared that the capitulation would be completed.  This, however, was not taking into account a gritty effort from young debutant Luke Kilworth.  Kilworth, who goes into Year 10 at Nelson College in a couple of weeks displayed a maturity belying his true age.  He grafted solidly for 71 balls and while he was never able to fully dominate the accurate attack, with Mason Lund they at least pieced together a testing target.

In reply, Stoke Nayland lost regular wickets as they tracked slowly towards the total. After opener, Darius Skeaping got his, by now traditional, solid beginning College kept themselves in the hunt as all the bowlers came to the party with tight lines and lengths.  At 87/5 the match was firmly in the balance.  The experience of skipper Brendan Hodgson and Eginton edged Stoke Nayland up to 140 and on Hodgson’s departure, Kendall Hodson assisted Eginton in bringing the result home.  It took four deliveries into the hundredth over of the day before the result was secured as Hodson hoisted Finn Raxworthy for six.  Eginton was circumspect for him in a very mature inning which ultimately won the game for his team.  All College bowlers performed their jobs admirably.

Nelson College                 166/6     Luke Kilworth 44*, Mason Lund 26*, Jonty Raxworthy 24, Damian Aitken 20, Dylan Eginton 3/33

Stoke Nayland                  170/6     Brendon Hodgson 48, Dylan Eginton 36*, Darius Skeaping 30, Kendall Hodson 22*, Finn Raxworthy 2/43

Stoke Nayland won by 4 wickets


On a low and slow track at Jubilee Park WTTU grafted hard to put together a below par 151 as they were bowled out in the 47th over.  Opener Matt Gargiulo looked impressive at the top of the order, but wickets fell consistently around him as the ACOB spinners took control of the innings.  Jack Aldridge was the only other batsman to go beyond twenty as Felix Murray, Josh Simpson and David Zohrab dominated the innings.  They bowled over half the overs but took eight wickets between them as the bevy of medium pacers tied proceedings up from the other end.  Murray back from his Central Districts campaign, offered turn and control while Simpson was flatter and quicker through the air but equally as effective.

Once James Graham and Thomas Zohrab put on 88 for the first wicket in the run chase the result was a formality.  It took ACOB 32 overs to reach the target for the loss of just four wickets.  Graham who is in a rich vein of form looked really good, driving and cutting imperiously.  Zohrab battled doggedly but when these two were out the burly Ben Hazlett took it upon himself to ensure there were no jitters amongst the ACOB camp.  While Hazlett was dismissed within sight of the victory, the actual victory delivery itself summed up WTTU’s day.  Requiring six runs for victory a no ball from Josh Newport got away from the wicketkeeper and deflected off the fielding helmet for an additional five-run penalty.  Game set and match to ACOB.

WTTU                                   151         Matt Gargiulo 58, Jack Aldridge 21, Josh Simpson 3/20, Felix Murray 3/27, David Zohrab 2/31

ACOB                                    152/4     James Graham 47, Thomas Zohrab 34, Ben Hazlett 30,

ACOB won by 6 wickets

 Falcons v Wakatu

Batting first the Falcons grafted their way to a competitive 203-8 on a demanding wicket but were unable to contain the previously under-achieving Wakatu batting line-up who reached their target for the loss of seven wickets in the 46th over.The catalyst for Wakatu, who picked up their first win of a demanding season, was skipper Devon Serrurier whose superb 78 from 98 balls was the innings of note. After the early loss of Tom Argyll, Mason Robinson and Daniel Hooper put a 50-run partnership together to see their side’s chase off to a solid start. When they went, Brad Smith joined forces with Serrurier, the pair combining for a 68-run partnership which took the score through to 142 before Smith departed. Serrurier continued on his merry way, taking toll of any wayward deliveries with clean hitting, before being dismissed with his side five runs short of victory. 

Unfortunately for the home side, none of their batsmen were able to match the clean striking of Serrurier, although opener Ma’ara Ave, with 40 from 45 balls, threatened to do so at the start of the day. However, things slowed after his dismissal. Andrew McCaa (45) played the anchor role but the scoring rate rarely rose above four an over. Matthew Stretch and Tarin Mason tried their best to lift the pace but their innings were too short to push the Falcons to a total they would feel entirely comfortable defending. Cody Golding, Smith and Jared Exeter each picked up two wickets, while spinner Matthew O’Sullivan impressed with 10 tidy overs.

Falcons                                 203-8    Ma’ara Ave 40, Andrew McCaa 45, Matt Stretch 38, Tarin Mason 23, Cody Golding 2-44, Brad Smith 2-25, Jared Exeter 2-45

Wakatu                                204-7    Devon Serrurier 78, Mason Robinson 37, Brad Smith 31, Daniel Hooper 27, Matt Stretch 3-19

Wakatu win by three wickets.  

NELSON, NEW ZEALAND – JANUARY 12: WTTU v ACOB on January 12 2018 in Nelson, New Zealand. (Photo by: Evan Barnes Shuttersport Limited)


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