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Ferguson fires as Aces take late flurry

A flurry of wickets late on day one has the Auckland Aces in a strong position, reducing the Otago Volts to 83/5 in their Plunket Shield fixture at Eden Park Outer Oval.

The home bowlers came out with fire in the belly in the afternoon, led by Lockie Ferguson with a double strike in the ninth over of the Volts’ innings.

Ferguson first knocked over Brad Wilson before welcoming Rob Nicol back home with a perfect yorker to have the skipper out LBW very next ball.

Ben Lister opened his First-Class wickets account in the following over accounting for Hamish Rutherford caught at mid-wicket as the Aces sensed an opening late on day one.

The carnage continued for Ferguson removing both Neil Broom and Jimmy Neesham before the day was out, in the process claiming his 100th First Class wicket.

Earlier in the day, Volts skipper Nicol won the toss and promptly asked the Aces to bat first.

It was a tough morning for the home batsmen with the Volts bowling a tidy line and length, asking questions of the top order.

Warren Barnes did most of the damage for the visitors, picking up three wickets before lunch to have the Aces going to the break at 59/5.

However, Ben Horne (56) and Michael Barry (51) showed some grit and fight after the break sharing in a 91-run partnership to bring the home side back into the contest.

Horne took a particular liking to one Michael Rae over, slapping two boundaries through the covers before bringing up his half century with a towering six over square leg.

It was a case of fifty and out for both batsmen though as the Volts continued to pick up regular wickets.

Coming into tea the Aces were 178/7, Matt McEwan and debutant Danru Ferns at the wicket, McEwan in a bullish mood with the blade.

The burly quick McEwan finished with 41* showing his value with the bat in the lower order, the Aces posting 213 from their first innings before coming out to claim their late day one wickets.

Fight and determination were personified in the Aces’ bowling effort this afternoon and they will be hoping for more of the same on day two.

For a full scorecard from today’s Plunket Shield fixture, click here. 

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