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March 12, 2012
Mitchell McClenaghan and Bhupinder Singh took career-best hauls as Auckland surged to an innings win over Otago at Colin Maiden Park. Otago lasted 38.4 overs in their first innings after they chose to bat, with McClenaghan blowing them away for 63. He had figures of 17-10-23-8 with wicketkeeper Gareth Hopkins ending on six catches, five of them off McClenaghan.
Hopkins led with the bat in making an unbeaten century that carried Auckland to 347 for 8 declared. Jeet Raval (84) and Neal Parlane (57) gave Auckland the start they needed and despite a mini-wobble in the middle, Hopkins ensured his side had a huge lead.
Craig Cumming (74) and Hamish Rutherford (39) began well for Otago in the second innings but it was always going to be an uphill task as they were faced with a deficit of 284. Offspinner Bhupinder kept up the pressure, giving away just 50 runs in his 34 overs for six wickets. Otago were eventually dismissed for 250, 34 short of making Auckland bat again.
Tom Latham made his maiden first-class century to set up Canterbury's 178-run victory over Central Districts in Nelson. Latham's 145 helped Canterbury to 420 for 9 declared in their first innings after they chose to bat. Latham was supported by his captain Peter Fulton (88).
Carl Cachopa responded with a breezy 151 but Central Districts declared their innings closed on 283 for 5 with Will Young unbeaten on 50. Central Districts put up a much better bowling show in the second innings. Latham added another fifty to his tally to prop up Canterbury's poor total of 159 for 9 declared.
Left with a target of 297, Central Districts collapsed in the fourth-innings chase. Matt Henry led with four wickets for Canterbury and Todd Astle wrapped up the tail with three strikes. Brady Barnett's unbeaten 40 at No. 9 was scant consolation for Central Districts as they slumped to 118 in 36 overs.
Wellington escaped with a draw against top-ranked Northern Districts after coming in within one wicket of defeat at the Basin Reserve. The ninth-wicket pair of Craig Cachopa and Mark Gillespie consumed 38 deliveries between them to salvage a stalemate for their side. Gillespie fell off what turned out to be the last delivery of the game. Graeme Aldridge, Brent Arnel and Jimmy Baker plugged away for 91.3 overs but were denied in the end. James Franklin and Michael Pollard led Wellington's resistance with patient half-centuries after they had been reduced to 90 for 4.
Northern Districts were the better side in the game and went past 300 both times with the bat. Daniel Flynn, Anton Devcich and Peter McGlashan made fifties in the first innings while Flynn's 136 was the highlight in the second. Stephen Murdoch and Jeetan Patel helped Wellington make 283 in their first innings. Jeetan and Andy McKay added 63 for the last wicket as Wellington recovered from 215 for 9.
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