Boult directs Northern Districts to easy win
Backed by a comprehensive bowling performance Nothern Districts beat Auckland by 9 wickets with a day to spare at Colin Maiden Park. Left-arm fast bowler Trent Boult justified James Marshall's decision to bowl, picking up three quick wickets to leave Auckland at 17 for 3. The hosts never recovered, bowled out for 136 in less than two sessions. Boult finished with figures of 5 for 35 and was given good support by Brent Arnel who picked up three wickets.
Auckland did not allow ND to pile up too big a lead, bowling them out for 213 courtesy a haul of 7 for 97 from left-arm spinner Bruce Martin. ND's innings was built around half-centuries from Brad Wilson and Hamish Marshall. Boult was equally impressive in the second innings, knocking over Auckland's top three. Opening bowler Graeme Aldridge and Arnel picked up wickets at regular intervals thereafter, ending the Auckland innings on 253.
Northern Districts made light work of chasing down their target of 177, with Wilson (100*) and Daniel Flynn (68*) involved in an unbeaten 136-run partnership to take their team home. Northern Districts are second on the points table after five matches.
Otago pulled off a comprehensive 116-run win over table-toppers Central Districts at McLean Park. Otago began well after being put in to bat; openers Craig Cumming and Michael Bracewell stringing together a 129-run partnership. The middle order built on the solid start with Shaun Haig and Neil Broom scoring 124 apiece, followed by a half-century from Derek de Boorder to steer Otago to 475 for 7 declared.
In a bid to get a result out of the match - day one was washed out and by the time Otago declared, there were just four sessions left - Central Districts batted just one session, scoring 156 for the loss of five wickets. Tim Weston powered the innings with a 54-ball 61, while the Otago bowlers shared the wickets around. The Otago second innings was even shorter, lasting just 9 overs and producing 71 runs for the loss of one wicket.
Needing 391 in two sessions, Central Districts started steadily with openers Peter Ingram and George Worker putting on a half-century stand. Ingram fell after making 22, but Worker stayed solid. He made 98 before he was dismissed by Ian Butler. The Otago bowlers took control of the game after that and though Matthew Sinclair made 59, Neil Wagner and offspinner Mark Craig took seven wickets between them to give Otago the victory.
The Wellington v Canterbury game was postponed.