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February 13, 2008
Hamish Bennett almost singlehandedly demolished the competition leaders Auckland, grabbing six wickets as Canterbury secured a three-wicket win at Eden Park Outer Oval. Bennett took 6 for 45 - his previous best in a one-dayer was three victims - and only half-centuries from Martin Guptill (51) and Rob Nicol (50) pushed Auckland to 178. Canterbury had some concerns of their own, wobbling at 10 for 2, but Shanan Stewart steadied the chase with 70 and they got there with nearly ten overs to spare.
A blistering half-century from Ewen Thompson drove Central Districts to a five-wicket win over Northern Districts in Palmerston North. An 83-run stand from Thompson and Tim Weston was just what the home side needed after falling to 146 for 5 in pursuing 229. Thompson hammered four sixes in his unbeaten 62, which came from 36 balls and was his highest one-day score, while Weston made a career-best 77 not out. It was a fine day all-round for Thompson, who collected three wickets as the Northern Districts batsmen struggled to go on with their starts. Only James Marshall (65) was threatening and the defeat left his team in last place on the table.
Stephen Fleming might have retired from ODIs - and probably soon from Tests as well - but he showed he still has plenty to offer in the limited-overs format with 93 as his team Wellington beat Otago by five wickets at the Basin Reserve. Grant Elliott had just as important a role, taking 5 for 34 in Otago's 238, while Neil Broom top scored with 62 and Warren McSkimming chipped in with 59 for the visitors. But Fleming's 96-ball effort guided Wellington into a winning position before he fell just short of a century, one of Bradley Scott's three victims.
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