Bates sinks Canterbury in Super Over
Canterbury 170 (Blizzard 57, van Beek 24*) tied with Auckland 170 (de Grandhomme 56, Colin 50*)
Auckland won the Super Over
Michael Bates' magnificent performance in the one-over eliminator restricted Canterbury to 5 for 2 in five balls, Colin Munro then finished the game in one ball, smashing Hamish Bennett for a six to seal Auckland's thrilling victory.
It was a brutal end to Canterbury's hopes in their chase of 171 after their final-wicket pair had batted splendidly to tie the game in the first place. Logan van Beek and Ed Nuttall came together with their team needing 32 off the last 15 balls. That equation became 16 off the final over, eventually it was just one run too many. Having fallen so agonisingly short, Van Beek, who made 24 off 15, with two fours and Nuttall, who hustled 13 off 8, with a six, could only watch as their team slumped to a fourth straight defeat in the Super Over.
Earlier, opener Aiden Blizzard had kept Canterbury up with the required rate of 8.55 with his 38-ball 57. A knock made all the more necessary because Auckland kept picking up wickets in clumps. Captain Ronnie Hira was the first to go in the third over, Henry Nicholls followed him in the fourth and a score of 37 for 2 left both teams in with a sniff.
The pendulum swung Auckland's way thanks to their captain Rob Nicol - he dismissed Blizzard and Andrew Ellis in the space of two balls and Canterbury were left needing 65 runs in 44 balls with only four wickets in hand. Mitchell McClenaghan took two wickets in the 18th over, which meant the asking rate soared to 12.8, which turned out to be just enough.
It was Auckland's second win in three games and their batting did set it up quite nicely. In the first innings, Colin de Grandhomme got to a fifty in only 25 balls and Nicol came in during the third over and batted through the innings to make 50 not out off 48 balls. Bennett was the pick of Canterbury's bowlers producing returns of 2 for 30 in his four overs.
Prior to the start of the game, a minute's silence was observed for Jonah Lomu, the New Zealand All Black who passed away at the age of 40.