01 Jul, Friday

Aces fold at home against Stags


Aces fold at home against Stags

Praneel HiraAces

The Aces won the toss and elected to bowl first on a blustery but sunny day on Eden Park Outer Oval.

The Auckland team featured two debutants, bowler Michael Snedden and batsman Raj Majithia, plus the return of Roneel Hira.

Snedden picked up his maiden wicket in the seventh over, grabbing Christian Leopard LBW for six.

When the Stags were three down, Greg Hay and Dean Foxtrot needed to put together a partnership before they could launch. The pair saw off the opening bowlers with patience.

Greg Hay brought up his 50 without much ceremony, but it was Foxtrot who accelerated from the 24th over, including slamming a ball from Will O’Donnell onto the concourse

It wasn’t the only one which reached up there through the innings.

Hay eventually departed for 85 off 97 balls, Snedden picking up his second. Will O’Donnell made a diving catch on the boundary and The Aces had a breakthrough at 178/3.

Foxcroft, however, wasn’t slowing down. After he made his first 30 runs at a modest pace, he raced past his 50, and the Stags looked on course for 300.

Josh Clarkson hit 16 from 14. But after hitting one six off the first ball of Snedden’s over, he tried the same on the second and didn’t get enough. Fellow debutant Raj Majithia took the catch and the Aces would have felt they had a sniff of restricting the Stags.

Doug Bracewell joined with Foxcroft, and together they set about trying to ensure the Aces didn’t settle. Together they put on 39 runs in just over four overs. Then Foxcroft tried to scoop Michael Barry over the keeper, and Sean Solia raced around the boundary to pick up the wicket. Foxcroft departed for 90 off 98 balls.

Barry bowled Bracewell for 42 off 31, but the CD tail-enders survived and hit boundaries. They finished their 50 overs on 295/8.

While the total was always going to be challenging, the Aces had every chance of reaching it, if they could put together partnerships.

That, however, was not to be.

After the Aces lost their first wicket in the fifth over, the Stags put pressure on, and the Aces folded. Only Barry offered any resistance, and that was primarily in the form of surviving dot balls.
The Stags did well in the field to make the most of the pressure being applied by the bowlers. Ma’Ara Ave took a running catch to dismiss Roneel Hira for nine. Next over and Felix Murray pulled off an impressive piece of fielding to get McClenaghan for six.

It says a lot about the innings that the biggest cheer for the Aces came when they crossed the 100 mark, no matter that they were eight down when it happened.

By the halfway mark, the result was clear, it was just a question of how much. The Aces made it just past 30 overs before the last wicket fell. The Stags were clear victors by 170 runs.

All the Ford Trophy teams now gather in Lincoln for three rounds from this Wednesday. The Aces face Otago in four days’ time. They’ll be looking to turn the results of the past two matches around.

Full scorecard here

Image Credit: Photosport.co.nz