Fan Following

First-person reports from the stands

Wellington v Otago, Plunket Shield, Wellington, day two

Burning up at the Basin

Everyone's out to enjoy the sunshine and the cricket in Welly

Trish Plunket

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Steven Finn's problems continued at Lord's, England v Sri Lanka, 2nd Test, Lord's, June 5, 2011
Steven Finn: also stars as Jack's beanstalk at a local theatre © Getty Images
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Choice of game
Well folks, here we are again - a sunny day two at the Basin Reserve, where Wellington have, almost in spite of themselves, posted a decent first-innings total. Well done to Luke Woodcock and Jeetan Patel for saving the day there. I was supporting Wellington and I had expected us, quite simply, to lose because we haven't done much else so far this season.

Key performer
It's a team game and the Firebirds played like a team. Andy McKay, Scott Kuggeleijn, and Patel bowled well, and everyone fielded poorly. The number of dives that went over the ball was rather impressive from both sides. Maybe it's just the ground. Otago only had one player though, and that was Neil Wagner.

One thing I'd have changed
The Firebirds have half a team on the bench. I'd have waved a magic wand and resolved the injury woes for The Blog himself, Iain O'Brien. Cos I'm nice like that.

Filling the gaps
I spent my time with the girls catching up on the latest gossip, or basking in the sun, attempting to write. I now know who has gotten married, had a baby or broken up over the winter. I also have another hundred words and epic sunburn on my neck. (Yes! Sun!)

Wow moment
What a catch! Stephen Murdoch took a blinder at third slip to dismiss Neil Broom. Suddenly the Otago innings looked very shaky and the Firebirds looked like they could field. This facade could not last, however.

Player watch
Look! Steven Finn! He makes everyone appear very short. The most memorable moment came from a recently dismissed Otago batsman who just made it inside the pavilion before he let everyone know what he thought of the decision. New bat time.

Shot of the day
How could I pick just one? The seven sixes that Neil Wagner smacked at the end of the innings were beautiful, in a very painful way. More painful when he had been dropped on four.

Crowd meter
The sun brings all the fans to the yard. People came in their lunch breaks, and there were more than a hundred in the last hour. The sun was out, the breeze was light, the fans were either pasty white or burny red. Ah, the glories of summer.

Entertainment
No. No food, no drinks, no entertainment… no security. The beer from the store down the road went very well with the sun.

First-class v T20?
What's the difference between a day's play in a four-dayer and a Twenty20? Apart from four or so hours? I love first-class cricket because of days like today. There's space to stretch out on the bank, I can pick my own music on my iPod, and the players we never see on TV are out there doing their thing. It's much more chilled, and I like it that way.

Accessories
For once I brought the necessary sunscreen, hat and sunnies. Also, a sign saying ACTUAL SIZE! For a photo op with Steven Finn, which I sadly did not get.

Overall
Just lovely. Wellington did much better than expected, the weather was much better than expected - what else could a fan ask for out of a day at the cricket?

Marks out of 10
8. Points off for everyone's inability to field and for the sunburn on my neck.

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Trish Plunket is a descendant of the guy who named the Plunket Shield. This affords her no special privileges whatsoever. She lives, plays and works (when closely supervised) in Wellington, New Zealand. When not supporting cricket teams who specialise in top-order collapses she studies psychology and writing, referees rugby union, and tries to convince people to employ her.

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Comments: 3 
Posted by Dr_Van_Nostrand on (December 2, 2011, 9:28 GMT)

Sounds better than the Sheffield Shield in Australia, where you're stuck in a small section of an empty concrete stadium and the staff act as if you're inconveniencing them by showing up.

Posted by fahmim on (December 1, 2011, 16:38 GMT)

Well written, Trish! Do keep writing whenever you go out to watch a game! So many people go to watch games, and yet we get such few reports from this section!!

Posted by christy29 on (December 1, 2011, 8:32 GMT)

good stuff, i was there today also. great to see people getting along to the 4 day stuff.

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