Fleming seals Wellington victory
Northern Districts 184 and 195 (Yovich 57*, Franklin 5-48) lost to Wellington 220 and 159 for 2 (Fleming 80*) by 8 wickets
Wellington resolved the issue of Northern Districts fighting their way back into this game by making a breakthrough in the second over of the day. James Franklin, who took his second five-wicket bag to end with match figures of 10 for 72, trapped Peter McGlashan lbw for 25. Daryl Tuffey went one run later, and the last pair added 48 runs before Graham Aldridge was dismissed by Jayesh Patel, the offspinner, for 22.
Joseph Yovich, who was left not out on 57, gave his team-mates a clear demonstration of the value of application, by spending 201 minutes at the crease. No-one else managed to bat more than McGlashan's 81 minutes. Franklin took 5 for 48 and Mark Gillespie 2 for 36.
Wellington were left with a target of 159 and were never troubled, despite losing the wickets of Matthew Bell for 18 and Luke Woodcock for 27. With Stephen Fleming coming at No. 3, and in such good form at the moment, the result merely rested on how long it would take. Fleming scored 80 off 66 balls to ensure it was a merciful release for ND. Neal Parlane was with him at the end on 20.
Central Districts 350 (Thompson 102, Englefield 95, Taylor 42, Mills 3 for 74, Canning 3 for 84) lead Auckland 20 for 1 by 330 runs
Put in to bat at Eden Park's Outer Oval, Central Districts had cause for concern when they could manage only 146 runs from their top-order, with Ross Taylor's 42 the only sizeable contribution. Fortunately, they found Jarrod Englefield ready to continue his good run of form with an unlikely partner in Ewen Thompson, the left-arm fast-medium bowler.
Before this match Thompson's best first-class score was 55 not out. However, he had his batting mojo with him on the day, and scored a sparkling 102 off 89 balls with four sixes and 14 fours. Englefield played his support, batting for 268 minutes for his own 95 in a seventh-wicket stand that netted 159 runs, six short of the record for CD against Auckland for the wicket. Englefield hit 17 boundaries in his innings.
Some lower-order support from Andrew Schwass who was 25 not out at the end saw CD reach the sound position of 350. Kyle Mills took 3 for 74 and Tama Canning 3 for 84. Auckland lost Richard Jones when the score was two but got through to 20 by stumps without further loss.
Otago 308 (Todd 123*, Redmond 55, Cumming 43; Cunis 5 for 78, McMillan 3 for 37) lead Canterbury 8 for 1 by 300 runs
Another recovery act was completed at Dunedin's University Oval where Otago were asked to bat first after Craig McMillan, the Canterbury captain, won the toss. Craig Cumming scored 43 and Aaron Redmond hit 55 during a 135-minute stay at the crease, but they couldn't avoid Otago sitting in the uncomfortable position of 171 for 8.
One man who refused to yield was Greg Todd, who had moved to Otago from Central Districts in a bid to get more match play. He made the most of this opportunity and scored his maiden first-class century. There were some anxious moments as defensive field setting restricted him to singles as he approached three figures.
The loss of his partner during a 110-run ninth-wicket stand with Warren McSkimming, who scored 30 in 127 minutes, when Todd was still two runs short of the century-mark added to the tension. James McMillan, the No. 11 batsman, had no fears however, and he turned the strike over enough for Todd to achieve his century with a straight-driven boundary.
Having achieved the mark, he lifted the assault level and got to 123 before Craig McMillan, who ended with 3 for 37, broke the partnership. Todd's 123 came off 157 balls and included two sixes and 18 fours. The best of the Canterbury bowlers was Stephen Cunis, who took 5 for 78.