A dominant morning session has given the ACES a Day One advantage against the Wellington Firebirds in the Plunket Shield.
The ACES made full use of winning the toss and bowling first on a green Basin wicket. Lockie Ferguson found both early swing and the top of Fraser Colson’s middle stump when Colson misguidedly left a dramatic inswinger. Ferguson’s 150th First Class wicket set the tone for a fine ACES day.
Matthew McEwan didn’t take long to follow suit as he nipped one away from Rachin Ravindra.
It was all the ACES in the opening session. Sean Solia and Kyle Jamieson came into the attack and kept the Firebirds grounded. By the 15th over, when Solia found Devon Conway’s outside edge, all four ACES’ bowlers had a wicket beside their names.
The Firebirds slipped further into trouble when Ferguson (4-23) and McEwan (3-28) returned to the attack. Two back of a length deliveries accounted for Ben Sears and Logan van Beek, sending the Firebirds to lunch at 88/7.
When the ACES returned from lunch, the hunger for wickets remained. An excellent bowling effort continued as Ferguson’s fiery pace and bounce was too much for the tail. After 31.3 overs, the ACES walked off the Basin, having bowled the Firebirds all out for 91.
The ACES reply began similarly, losing openers Graeme Beghin and Jeet Raval before crossing 30.
Bad light ended play, but not before Mark Chapman (28) and Sean Solia (25) ensured the ACES took a significant advantage into Day Two.
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