Auckland hold on for a draw
Wellington 201 and 372 drew with Auckland 226 and 268 for 7
An outstanding innings by Tim McIntosh ensured that Auckland came away with an honourable draw at the Eden Park Outer Oval today. And McIntosh added his own touch of honour to the proceedings when he walked, after being caught by Chris Nevin, the Wellington wicketkeeper, after making a splendid 104. McIntosh batted for 329 minutes and hit 13 fours, in an innings that proved crucial to the final outcome. Rob Nicol scored 45 in 160 minutes, but it still required Reece Young and Paul Hitchcock to hold out for more than an hour to secure the draw that saw Auckland move back to the head of the points table. For Wellington, Mathew Walker picked up 3 for 55 in a fine display of controlled medium-pace. Luke Woodcock's steady 86 in the third day had given Wellington the advantage.
Northern Districts 121 and 242 for 5 drew with Otago 305 for 8 dec
A determined batting performance by Northern Districts paid off in the rain-affected match against Otago at Carisbrook in Dunedin. Nick Horsley scored a useful 69, spread over 229 minutes, while Hamish Marshall and Bruce Martin shut up shop and added 97. Marshall, who had a great one-day series in Pakistan, was unbeaten on 65, while Martin chipped in with an undefeated 54. For Otago, Brad Scott was the most impressive bowler on show, and finished with 3 for 50.
Central Districts 196 and 318 drew with Canterbury 190 and 184 for 7
Palmerston North doesn't enjoy the greatest reputation with regard to its weather, but Canterbury won't be complaining after this match - they were better off for the wet weather that disrupted play on the last day. Some defiant batting from Gary Stead (44) and Aaron Redmond (29) kept the Central Districts bowlers at bay, before weather came to the Cantabs' aid. Regan West, the left-arm spinner, snapped up three victims, but Paul Wiseman and Brendon Donkers defied them until play was called off. The draw left Canterbury in second place on the State Championship table behind Auckland. The next round of matches begin on December 27.