North Otago loses outright in Timaru

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South Canterbury took an outright victory over North Otago in last weekend’s Hawke Cup elimination tie at Aorangi Park in Timaru.

North Otago posted 171 (all out) in their first innings. Opener Jeremiah Shields went for a duck before Duncan Drew top-scored with 56 and Bent Cant posted 37.

Sean Conlan also walked for nought before tailenders Jordan Horrell (15) and Chris Ware (24) did their bit to up North Otago’s total.

South Canterbury got off to a fairly pedestrian start with Sam Porter and James Laming posting 4 and 3 respectively.

Prabodha Arthavidu then notched 51 off 49 balls followed by Jacob Naylor’s 48 but South Canterbury could not capitalise and were eventually all out for 138.

Ricky Whyte and Ben Cant proved most effective with the ball for North Otago, taking 3/20 off 8 overs and 2 for 16 off 7 overs.

North Otago could only muster an underwhelming 100 (all out) in their next innings as Stephan Grobler top-scored with 25.

South Canterbury’s second innings got off to a shaky start as opener Sam Porter’s wicket was taken for nought by David Sewell.

James Laming (32) and Prabodha Arthavidu (38) then set about chasing down North Otago’s total.William Wright (42 not out) and Ben Watson (10 not out) surpassed the visitor’s total with four wickets to spare in the 38th over.

North Otago remain at the points table’s summit despite the loss and a first innings victory this weekend would put Mid Canterbury out of contention and leave South Canterbury needing two out right wins in their fixtures against Southland and Otago Country.

Should North Otago down Mid Canterbury outright this weekend, they will be challenging for the Hawke Cup with no other teams able to pass them at the top of the table.

North Otago manager Hamish McMurdo said concentration will be key in North Otago next tie against Mid Canterbury and called for an improved batting display at Milner Park.

“We’ve got good bowlers that can land it on a dime, but the batters need to stand up and give them something toaim for and not rely on one or two batsmen,” he said.

By James Ford

PHOTO: SCOTT CAMERON – North Otago’s Duncan Drew in action in Timaru.