A day of massive wins, and How
Otago 335 for 7 (M Bracewell 98, Redmond 63, Boult 3-66) beat Northern Districts 113 (Flynn 34, Wells 3-15, Duffy 3-31) by 222 runs
Northern Districts collapsed from 62 for 1 to 113 all out in their chase of 336 to crumble to a 222-run loss against Otago, the largest margin of defeat among the three games played on the opening day of the Ford Trophy 2014-15.
Daniel Flynn's 34 at the top of the order was the best score for Northern Districts and it was his wicket, in the 14th over to Sam Wells, that triggered the collapse. Every Otago bowler, except Josh Finnie, was among the wickets with Wells and Jacob Duffy taking three wickets apiece.
Earlier, Otago posted a solid 335 for 7, riding on Michael Bracewell's 98 and contributions from their top five. Aaron Redmond scored 65 and set up a solid base with a 71-run opening partnership before contributing to a 74-run, second-wicket stand with Bracewell. Otago picked up their run-scoring once Redmond fell. Bracewell's 98 came off 79 balls with three fours and eight sixes and the line-up did enough to ensure that Otago were not hampered by the loss of a few late wickets.
Central Districts 405 (How 177, D Bracewell 78, Worker 71, Ellis 5-97) beat Canterbury 188 (Nicholls 45, Milne 4-48) by 217 runs
Jamie How's 99-ball 177 and Adam Milne's 4 for 48 were the pillars of Central Districts' mammoth 217-run win over Canterbury. How's century helped Central Districts post 405 runs after they opted to bat and Milne's strikes, with support from Doug Bracewell and Seth Rance, skittled Canterbury out for 188 in less than 30 overs.
How and George Worker (71) shared an opening stand of 170, in a little over 21 overs. How held the innings together after Worker fell, ensuring the pace of run-scoring did not slacken. His 177 had 14 fours and as many sixes and by the time he was dismissed, Central Districts had reached a strong 270 within 35 overs. The late flourish came from Doug Bracewell, who smacked 78 off 34 balls and a couple of big hits from No. 11 Andrew Mathieson pushed the score past 400.
Canterbury's chase never got off the ground as Bracewell, Rance and Milne quickly brought the side down to 90 for 5 in the 15th over. Todd Astle strung a couple of quick partnerships with Andrew Ellis and Matt Henry - 42 for the sixth and seventh wickets - but once Astle was dismissed for 43, the innings ended within four overs.
Auckland 385 for 5 (Guptill 111, Munro 79*, C Cachopa 70) beat Wellington 192 (Elliott 77, Woodcock 50, Bates 3-25, McClenaghan 3-30) by 193 runs
Wellington's defence of their Ford Trophy title began on a poor note as they suffered a 193-run defeat against Auckland. Building on Martin Guptill's 111, Auckland posted an imposing 385 for 5 and Wellington could only manage 192 in response.
Guptill's century, and his 156-run stand with Rob Nicol helped Auckland overcome the loss of an early wicket and set the platform for their rapid ascent. Guptill was dismissed with the score at 222 for 3 in the 38th over and, in the next 12 overs, Auckland amassed 163 runs with brisk fifties from Craig Cachopa and Colin Munro. Cachopa struck 70 off 42 balls with five fours and four sixes, while Munro slammed an unbeaten 40-ball 79 with five fours and six sixes.
Michael Bates' three-wicket burst at the start reduced Wellington to 48 for 6. Fifties from Grant Elliott and Luke Woodcock, and the 109-run, seventh-wicket stand between the two helped inject some resistance into the Wellington innings but their chase folded up quickly after both batsmen were dismissed in the 31st over.