McIntosh and Martin guide Aces to safety
Sunday, December 15, 2013
Tim McIntosh shared in an unbroken 101 run partnership
The Aces fourth Plunket Shield match of the season against the Central Stags ended in a draw at Nelson Park, Napier.
All three results were possible heading into the final day with the hosts holding a lead of 281 runs with three wickets in hand. Michael Bates picked up two wickets on the final morning to finish with excellent figures of 4/31 from 22 overs as the Stags were dismissed for 232 leaving Auckland a target of 339 for victory.
The chase didn’t start well with openers Jeet Raval and Martin Guptill dismissed in the early stages and when Craig Cachopa, Colin Munro, Colin de Grandhomme and Gareth Hopkins all fell cheaply soon after the goal became survival rather than victory.
At this stage Bruce Martin joined Tim McIntosh at the crease and the pair proceeded to bat out the day facing 34 overs in an unbroken 101 run partnership in which both players reached their half centuries.
The result means the Aces are still yet to record a victory in the longer format this season and currently sit bottom of the table. However they are only 7 points behind the fourth placed Northern Knights whom they will face in round five of the Plunket Shield starting on Friday at Eden Park.
Central Stags 467 (P Trego 141, K Van Wyk 83, B Wheeler 68, J How 59, M McCleneghan 3/110) & 232 (P Trego 45, D Bracewell 36, M Bates 4/31, B Martin 4/78) drew with Auckland Aces 351 (M Guptill 185, C Munro 51, A Patel 3/42, B Wheeler 3/56) & 174/6 (T McIntosh 57no, B Martin 55no) after day three.