New Zealand State Championships 2004-05 December 13, 2004

Sinclair and How flay Northern Districts

Canterbury 111 (Shaw 39, Mills 5-33, Adams 4-45) trail Auckland 156-6 by 45 runs Scorecard

Kyle Mills celebrated his return to domestic cricket for Auckland after New Zealand's tours of Bangladesh and South Africa by taking only his second five-wicket haul in first-class cricket. Canterbury were on the receiving end after they had decided to bat first as Mills took 5 for 33. They were dismissed for 111 with Andre Adams backing up Mills by taking 4-45.

Meanwhile Kerry Walmsley, who took 10 wickets in Auckland's last match against North Districts, took only one this time round, at a cost of 13 runs off his 11 overs.

The fact Canterbury made as many as 111 was because of Hayden Shaw, an emerging allrounder and a former national hockey player, who hit 39 off 41 balls, included 20 runs in boundaries off one Adams over. Shanan Stewart had the next highest score of 15.

Auckland made it seem that the batting problems Canterbury had felt had disappeared in the cool, overcast conditions as they breezed to 64 before Richard Jones was dismissed for 35. Mark Richardson, who will retire after this match, batted in the knowledge that 41 would let him finish with 10,000 career runs. But after being dismissed for 35 too, he will hope for an opportunity in second innings.

That could well depend on how long Lou Vincent bats, and the level of support he receives. Auckland were 45 runs ahead at stumps with six wickets down. Vincent was unbeaten on 48, scored from 103 balls. With him was Brooke Walker, the Auckland captain, who has made an art of playing a supporting role in recent seasons. He was eight not out with his side looking to secure a substantial lead on the second morning to bat Canterbury out of the match. Andrew Ellis was the pick of the Canterbury bowlers and in an impressive spell, he collected ad 3 for 40 off 17 overs.

Central Districts have scored 433 for 8 (How 121, Sinclair 104, M Hart 3-67) against Northern Districts

James Marshall, the Northern Districts captain, who missed the second innings of his side's match against Auckland with an ankle injury, had little comfort after winning the toss at McLean Park as Central Districts reached 433 for 8 at the end of the first day.

Mathew Sinclair, who has returned from international duty, and Jamie How put the ND attack to the sword, putting on 215 for the first wicket before How was dismissed for 121 scored from 125 balls. It was the highest opening stand between these sides, passing the 180-runs partnership that Tony Blain and Chris Smith made in 1986-87.

How became only the second CD player, after Martin Crowe, and the seventh New Zealander to score centuries in three successive innings. How also registered his century before lunch, being the fourth CD player, after Mark Greatbatch, Blain and Craig Spearman to achieve that.

Sinclair opened the innings, which suggests that he may have been under instruction from the national selectors to do so in the wake of Mark Richardson's retirement, and he scored 104 off 114 balls. Peter Ingram, the regular opener, scored 36 at No 3, which was followed by Glen Sulzberger's 46. Ross Taylor enjoyed more success than in the opening game and hit 46 off 42 balls, but then CD lost some ground in the last overs of the day as four wickets fell for 37 runs. That provided some comfort for the ND bowlers, most notably Darryl Tuffey who had three wickets for 106 off 23 balls, while Matt Hart's left-spin still proved good enough to take three for 67. Graeme Aldridge had two for 48.

International bowler Ian Butler had problems with his rhythm, as he conceded 10 no-balls to have none for 80 off 16 overs.

Otago have scored 306 for 9 (Gaffaney 99,Hopkins 86, Franklin 4-57) against Wellington

Otago recovered from early misfortune, thanks largely to a 150-run third-wicket stand between Chris Gaffaney and Gareth Hopkins after being asked to bat first by Wellington at the Basin Reserve.

Gaffaney was the hard luck story of the day being dismissed for 99 for the second time in his career, the first time that it has happened twice to an Otago batsmen, the others having achieved the feat being Bert Sutcliffe, Noel McGregor, Wayne Blair and Warren Lees. Gaffaney had been dropped on 78 but it was cruel misfortune after a fighting display. Hopkins too, was denied a century when dismissed for 86.

Their efforts were not in vain as the tail wagged. Greg Todd score 37 and Nathan McCullum was 27 not out at stumps.

Wellington recovered the situation when the second new ball was taken with James Franklin having much more effect than earlier in the day. He ended with four for 57 off 24 overs while Mark Gillespie ended with two for 85.