Wright, Cachopa give Auckland thrilling win

Auckland 158 for 4 (Wright 56, Cachopa 42, Arnel 3-25) beat Wellington 157 for 7 (Papps 59, Murdoch 35) by six wickets

Luke Wright and Craig Cachopa gave Auckland a victory in their first match of the HRV Cup, against Wellington. Chasing 158, Auckland won with only one ball to spare despite having six wickets in hand.

They were off to a shaky start by losing openers Jeet Raval and Martin Guptill to Brent Arnel within the first five overs. Wright and Cachopa put them back on track from there with a partnership of 76 in under ten overs. Wright scored 56 with the help of three fours and as many sixes as the duo took the score past 100. But Arnel struck again and sent Wright back in the 14th over.

Auckland now needed 52 from 36 and were dented further with the wicket of Gareth Hopkins ten balls later, with 39 still required. Colin de Grandhomme joined Cachopa to take them home with a quickfire 25 off 13, which featured two fours and a six, and Cachopa was unbeaten on 42.

Wellington had also lost their openers early when they were put in to bat. Michael Papps and Stephen Murdoch then scored 57 for the third wicket before the latter was dismissed for a 24-ball 35. Franklin also departed soon and Papps registered his fifth T20 fifty, before Luke Woodcock's cameo of 30 off 15 powered them past 150. However, wickets on the last three balls of the innings, a team hat-trick, meant they finished on 157 for 7.