Wellington just short in huge chase
Auckland 383 for 7 (Hopkins 142, Kitchen 131, Patel 4-82) beat Wellington 365 (Papps 129, Woodcock 66*) by 18 runs
After Jamie How struck the joint-second highest List A individual score on Wednesday, the Ford Trophy was treated to another high-scoring match when Auckland, after posting 383 in Eden Park, beat Wellington by 18 runs. The result pushed them to the top of the points table.
Auckland, after being put into bat, lost opener Tim McIntosh for 8, before Anaru Kitchen and Gareth Hopkins put together a 218-run stand for the second wicket. When Kitchen fell for a career-best 131 off 107 balls, which included 11 fours and five sixes, Colin Munro was sent in as pinch-hitter, and he struck 38 off 14 balls. The rest of the batsmen chipped in to help push the total to an imposing 383 for 7 at the completion of their fifty overs.
Gareth Hopkins scored his second century in less than a week, finishing with a career-best 142. Offspinner Jeetan Patel was the sole bright spot for Wellington, finishing with figures of 4 for 82.
Wellington were dealt a big blow early on in their chase when opener Jesse Ryder was dismissed for 9. Opener Michael Papps did his best to anchor the innings, as Wellington strived to build substantial partnerships. Papps combined with Luke Ronchi in a 49-run second-wicket partnership, then followed it up with a fourth-wicket stand of 99 with James Franklin. Wellington tried to keep abreast of the required run-rate, but once Papps fell for 129 in the 40th over, their prospects of victory dimmed. Luke Woodcock struck 66 off 47 balls to help keep the chase alive, but Auckland were able to fish out the remaining wickets, as Wellington fell short of the target.