Franklin guides Wellington to comfortable win
Wellington 161 for 3 (Franklin 68*, Brendan Taylor 53) beat Auckland 157 for 9 (Hopkins 49, Elliott 3-16) by seven wickets
James Franklin blasted 68 off 38 balls to take bottom-dwellers Wellington to a comfortable win over table-toppers Auckland at the Basin Reserve. Franklin and Brendan Taylor, who made 53, helped the hosts chase Auckland's middling total of 157 in just 18.3 overs, giving Wellington their first win of the tournament.
Wellington lost a wicket in the first of their chase but Taylor, the Zimbabwe captain, scored quickly to give them a platform. When Taylor was dismissed in the 14th over, Wellington needed 51 to win off 39 balls. Franklin needed just 30; he hit three sixes and five fours in his knock to take Wellington home.
Auckland's innings had been hampered by a cluster of wickets falling at the start and then again in the end. Early strikes had left them 45 for 3 in the seventh over. They recovered to reach 150 for 5 in the 19th but five wickets fell in the last two overs, preventing a final surge. In between those spells Gareth Hopkins and Anaru Kitchen played important hands. Kitchen scored 39 off 27 balls while Hopkins hit seven fours in his 49 off 33 balls. Grant Elliott struck twice in the last over and there was also a run-out. The flurry of the wickets at the end cost Auckland a few runs and made the chase easier for Wellington.