The Honda Financial Premiership has its first finalists after Takapuna and Parnell both convincingly won through to Monday’s T20 Final at Onewa Domain.
Takapuna vs. Howick Pakuranga – Onewa Domain
Though Danru Ferns struck early with the wicket of Max O’Dowd in the first over, Takapuna’s Ben Beecroft and Will O’Donnell were able to set the tone through the powerplay. Coming in at three, Beecroft hit 4 fours and a six before Taine Jolley gave Howick Pakuranga a lift. Jolley didn’t stop there, going through O’Donnell in the 8th over.
Mike Sclanders then took over, playing the defining knock of the match. The right-hander dominated the remainder of the scoring, hitting 5 fours and 3 sixes on his way to an unbeaten 73 off 51 balls. Takapuna took 47 runs from the final four overs, powering their total through to an imposing 163/6.
The reigning champions Howick Pakuranga, however, had the power and experience to complete such a chase. Jordan Sussex, last summer’s semifinal hero, was the first to strike for the Pirates and Dan James was quick to follow as Howick Pakuranga fell to 11/2 in the third over.
It didn’t get any easier for the Alpacas, with spin trio Sclanders, O’Donnell and Matt Jones introduced to the attack. Brian Barnard and Andrew Morrison fought to get the chase back on track and their partnership of 56 did just that before the innings fell away.
Jones picked up Barnard for 30 and Sclanders snaffled Morrison for 23 as the Alpacas wobbled at 61/4. When Ryan Quinn claimed the wicket of the dangerous Donovan Grobbelaar, Takapuna could see their ticket to the final. There was still plenty of batting in the Alpaca’s hut, but Sclanders added another two wickets to his already excellent day to book the Pirates a home final.
Takapuna 163/6 (M Sclanders 73) defeated Howick Pakuranga 124 (B Barnard 30, M Sclanders 3-25) by 39 runs.
Parnell vs. Suburbs New Lynn – Shore Road
Dane Watson gave Suburbs New Lynn an early opening with the wicket of Ben Rae in the second over. Just as Andy Lane may have thought he was in, the right-hander was caught by Jeet Raval to give Sam Devereaux and Suburbs a timely wicket.
Aniket Parikh (33) joined Flynn McGregor-Sumpter (32) in the middle and the pair fared best with the bat for Parnell. While both players were kept in check by Suburbs’ bowlers, the pair built through the middle overs. Watson returned to the attack in the 12th over and combined with his captain Michael Barry to remove McGregor-Sumpter.
Parikh followed soon after before both Brad Rodden and Ollie Pringle hit aggressive 19s. Four run-outs then ended Parnell’s inning on the final ball and at the innings break, Suburbs would have been pleased with their efforts. Bowling Parnell out for 132 would have had them, in most minds, as favourites.
Pringle continued his good form with the ball, taking the wicket of Raj Majithia on the second ball and Barry in the third over. Suburbs fell into further trouble when Fanie de Villiers found the edge of Raval. Just when Tristan Payle threatened to get the visitors back in the match, with one of the more fluent innings of the day, de Villiers struck again.
de Villiers (4-24) took two more wickets as Suburbs collapsed to 62/6. There was still plenty of time for Suburbs, but the task from there proved too much. Josh Fisher bagged a pair of wickets before a run-out ended the match and booked Parnell’s spot in the final.
Parnell 132 (A Parikh 33, F McGregor-Sumpter 32) defeated Suburbs New Lynn 86 (T Payle 31, F de Villiers 4-24) by 46 runs.
T20 CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL
Takapuna vs. Parnell
Monday 27 January, 2 pm start