Premier Men’s Club Cricket – 2 & 3 February

Hedley Howarth Championship

Suburbs New Lynn v Parnell

Parnell’s first innings would not have been what they envisioned when they opted to bat at Ken Maunder. Instead, three wickets to Dane Watson in two overs left them reeling at 66/6 before lunch. Immediately after lunch Suburbs claimed their seventh, and only a valiant rear-guard action from Flynn McGregor-Sumpter and Josh Fisher hauled Parnell past 100.

Going out to put on a lead, Suburbs quickly found themselves in almost as dire a position as Parnell. Four wickets to Aniket Parikh, and they were 93/6 midway through the third session. Jonny Bassett-Graham and Mitchell Murray put on 73 for the seventh wicket, and Bassett-Graham’s 69 meant Suburbs were able to declare on 191/9.

Parnell started their second innings slowly, but when Ben Rainger got out for 53, skipper Brad Rodden decided to make a game of it. Rodden slotted 12 fours and 12 sixes to make an unbeaten 144. James Parslow picked up five wickets in seven overs as he cleared the tail, while still conceding a baffling 67 runs.

Suburbs had a session left to make 219 and rose to meet the challenge admirably. Jeet Raval started the innings with a six, and with Joe Cracknell, set a rocketing pace. Ganesh Ratnasabapathy took two wickets in two balls, including Raval for 71. No matter, Captain Victor Davies continued finding the boundary, and Suburbs claimed a five-wicket win.

Parnell 118 (B Rainger 37, F McGregor-Sumpter 33; D Watson 3-27, M Barry 2-24) and 288 (B Rodden 144*, B Rainger 53; J Parslow 5-67, J Bassett-Graham 2-100) lost to Suburbs New Lynn 191/9 dec. (J Bassett-Graham 69, M Murray 28; A Parikh 4-43, N Perera 2-21) and 219/5 (J Raval 71, J Parslow 41; G Ratnasabapathy 3-59) by five wickets.

Howick Pakuranga vs Cornwall

When Cornwall set Howick Pakuranga in to bat at Lloyd Elsmore, they probably were reasonably happy with the way it went. Daniel Young guided the early part of the innings with a well-made 59, and while other players made starts, Cornwall dismissed the Alpacas for 204 in two sessions.

What they would not have been so enthused about was the way Matt McEwan and Danru Ferns then came back out and laid waste to their top order. McEwan in particular was miserly, his eight-over spell finishing at 3-8.

Cornwall did what they do best, digging in and making Howick Pakuranga work. They reached close of play seven down. Aditya Dhadwal would eventually run out of partners on 42, Cornwall making 101.

Howick Pakuranga enforced the follow-on, looking for their bowlers to again dominate. Sam Crooks was the hold-out this innings, and his seventh-wicket partnership with Lucas Dasent put on 74 runs and probably frustrated the Alpacas intensely. Cornwall made 206 and left their opposition with less than a session to claim victory.

After Matt Quinn took two wickets in his second over, and Howick Pakuranga looked shaky at 31/4, there might have been an expectation that they would settle for a first innings win.

If that was the plan, no one told McEwan. He hit four 6s and two 4s in his unbeaten 45, rocketing Howick Pakuranga to a five-wicket victory.

Howick Pakuranga 204 (D Young 59, D Phillips 39; B Naylor 3-28, M Gibson 3-54) and 108/5 (M McEwan 25*, B Walsh 17*, M Gibson 2-22, M Quin 2-29) defeated Cornwall 101 (Ad Dhadwal 42*, E Jones 19; M McEwan 3-14, D Ferns 3-34,) and 206 (S Crooks 97, L Dasent 33; D Grobbelaar 3-44, J Brown 2-30) by five wickets.

Takapuna v Papatoetoe

If the match between Papatoetoe and Takapuna will be remembered for anything, it will be performance of Takapuna skipper Will O’Donnell.

The first innings from Papatoetoe went much as expected. At 51/4 early in the first session thanks to a good start from Ross ter Braak, Papatoetoe were all out just before tea. Navdeep Aujla led the recovery with 55, Matt Jones impressed with the ball, taking 4-31.

Takapuna started reasonably slowly as well. O’Donnell joined Max O’Dowd in the 20th over with the score at 58/2.

At the end of day one, O’Donnell was on 93 not out, and Takapuna was 235/5. The next morning, O’Donnell made his hundred, and he was off. His performance overshadowed the decent showings of lower-order batsmen Daniel James and Ryan Quinn, who scored 57 and 44 respectively.

Ter Braak left him standing on 198, but Jordan Sussex came out to first run the two needed for O’Donnell’s double century and then to see him plunder 30 more runs from eight balls to get Takapuna over the 500-run mark at the end of the first session.

Papatoetoe, however, were not lying down. They knew they couldn’t win. But there was every chance of escaping a loss if they could last the day.

Josh Plummer and Jake Dunford both made half-centuries at the top of the order. Then Damanpreet Bhatti, Mick Hosking, and Sanjit Birla gritted their teeth at the bottom. Hosking took 43 balls to make 8, Birla would see out 32 without getting off the mark.

What to do when your strike bowlers are getting strings of maidens and the close of play is looming? You throw the ball to the man of the moment, of course. When O’Donnell finally bowled Bhatti for 22 off 94, Papatoetoe had batted for more than 70 overs to be all out for 208.

Takapuna had the win by an innings and 124 runs, and yet somehow still by just the skin of their teeth.

Papatoetoe 172 (N Aujla 55, J Plummer 33; M Jones 4-31, J Sussex 3-59) and 208 (J Dunford 63, J Plummer 54; W O’Donnell 3-6, D James 3-38) lost to Takapuna 504/8 (W O’Donnell 230*, D James 57; M Hosking 2-60) by an innings and 102 runs.

Auckland University vs East Coast Bays

No team could have asked for a better start after opting to bowl than University managed against East Coast Bays. After 12 overs, Bays were 23/5, clinging desperately to Louis Delport and Ryan Harrison. They were both gone by the time their team made 100.

Anthony Ireland was devastating with the ball. His first five overs picked up 4-6, as he single-handedly removed the entire East Coast Bays top order. They eventually reached 146 midway through the second session.

University then played essentially the opposite innings. Ben Beecroft and Jack Windler put on 85 runs for the first wicket, then Finn Allen joined Windler and the pair took University through to close of play one down. Windler was dismissed shortly after making his half century, leaving Allen to guide the rest of the innings. The rest of the University batsmen played a supporting role as Allen brought up hiscentury and University declared for 267, with two sessions to bowl out East Coast Bays for the win.

Bucking the trend of the rest of the round, University put on a better performance in their second bowling innings than their first. East Coast Bays’ top four made eight runs between them, and the lower order couldn’t make up for it. While Delport and Ryan Schierhout held out for as long as possible, Ireland again went through the batsmen, and Jeet Patel swept aside the tail.

When Patel snared Schierhout for 42, some quick calculation was necessary. East Coast Bays had made 120. There was plenty of time for University to bat again, but no need. They picked up an outright win by an innings and one run.

East Coast Bays 146 (R Harrison 58, R Schierhout 32; A Ireland 5-34, B Hawkes 2-23) and 120 (R Schierhout 42, C Briggs 17; J Patel 4-43, A Ireland 3-19) lost to Auckland University 267/9 dec. (F Allen 117 B Beecroft 54, J Windler 54; L Delport 7-82) by an innings and one run.

Tom Hellaby Championship

Eden Roskill v Grafton

Grafton had Eden Roskill in a spot of bother at 64/3 in their first innings. Then Eden Roskill showed why they’re at the top of the table. Oyishik Chakraborty and Barrington Rowland added 159 for the fourth wicket.

Ariyan Hassan removed both set batsman nust before tea. Number six Jeet Kumar marshalled the lower-order through to 330/8 before Eden Roskill declared.

The start of day two was delayed after the sprinklers at Keith Hay Park came on overnight. Grafton knuckled down when play resumed and it was slow going up until lunch. At 83/2, all four first-innings results were still possible. Kumar picked up a brace and Grafton were in trouble.

Michael Ruffell had pitched his tent and his his skipper Michael Snedden was prepared to do the same. By now, Grafton were looking to survive. Snedden faced 102 balls for 19 before he was stumped just before tea. When Ruffell was eventually caught on 75 – and after a marathon effort of 236 balls – Hassan took up the mantle with 19 overs left to bat.

He lost two partners along the way, but entered the final six balls with two wickets in hand. By now, Sachin Variath had bravely come out to bat with an injured thumb and faced three deliveries. Hassan reached 50 in the last over, before before picking out the one boundary fielder on the leg-side. This left Variath on strike with two balls remaining. The left-hander survived and Grafton salvaged a memorable draw.

Eden Roskill 330/8 dec. (O Chakraborty 90, B Rowland 72; A Hassan 4-83) drew with Grafton 233/9 (M Ruffell 75, A Hassan 50; B Rowland 3-40, J Kumar 3-55).

Birkenhead v Waitakere

Ben Lister and Robert Evans fired up as Waitakere bowled themselves into the box seat early. Tony Treadaway and Roop Bommala ground out useful scores, but neither kicked on to a big total – though the dot balls didn’t translate into wickets as Waitakere racked up 22 maidens in 70 overs. Todd Wannan returned to the attack with the tail in his sights and didn’t waste any time in ending Birkenhead’s showing at162.

Waitakere were in no mood to muck around. At 62/1 after ten overs, Birkenhead needed wickets before stumps. The hosts couldn’t build enough pressure and fifties to Brad Cachopa and Nathan Fletcher took Waitakere through to 112/1 at the close of play.

The visitors came out on day two and breezed past Birkenhead’s total to pick up valuable first innings points. A big total was on Waitakere’s agenda, Jared Challis blasted 50 of his own before Usman Ghani fought back for Birkenhead, picking up 6-75.

Birkenhead fared in their second innings. Arjuna Jayasinghe scored his third ton of the season combining ,with Akash Christian for a 176-run second-wicket stand. Waitakere’s bowlers couldn’t make ainroads and the match ended with Birkenhead on 219/3.

Birkenhead 162 (R Bommala 35, T Treadaway 32; B Lister 3-10) and 219/3 (A Jayasinghe 126, A Christian 72) lost first innings to Waitakere 287 (B Cachopa 77, J Challis 66; U Ghani 6-75, T Treadaway 3-71).

Ellerslie v North Shore

Dinesh de Silva and Ryan Higgins decimated North Shore’s top order after sending them in to bat on a spicy wicket. 29/4 became 60/5 when Higgins bagged his third. Stephen Baard, the lone survivor from the top order, played patiently but was adjudged lout LBW before North Shore made 100. Carl Brungar stayed with Tendai Chitongo and the pair dragged North Shore back into the match.

Higgins returned to dismiss Brungar, but Chitongo found another reliable partner in Ben Wall. They put on 51 runs for the 9th wicket, taking North Shore were over 200. Chitongo ended with 82 valuable runs in a score of 235.

Ellerslie lost a wicket in the first over before Jonty Barnes and Alan Burton successfully negotiated their way through to stumps. Day two mirrored the start of Ellerslie innings as Brungar tooka wicket from the last ball of the first over. Burton was trapped in front three shy of fifty and Higgins was caught behind with lunch in sight.

The McKenzie brothers – Gus and Jock – chipped away at the middle order before Brungar and Chitongo returned after lunch to secure first innings points, Ellerslie all out for 128.

North Shore enforced the follow-on and after two early wickets, the visitors were eying outright victory. Aditya Edekar battled through some fiery spells before being dismissed on 42. The heat was on Higgins and the all-rounder backed up his earlier five-for with 80* off 77 to take Ellerslie safely through the final session.

North Shore 235 (T Chitongo 84, S Baard 61; R Higgins 5-33, D de Silva 3-60) won first innings against Ellerslie 128 (A Burton 47, R Higgins 30; C Brungar 4-29, T Chitongo 3-33) and 156/4 (R Higgins 80* A Edekar 42).