Auckland’s U15 Girls side fell just seven runs short of victory in the Wanganui Cricket Festival Final last week.
The competition pits the six provinces U15 sides against each other in a round robin 30 over format with the top two sides meeting in the final at the end of the week.
Auckland began the tournament with a four-wicket victory over Wellington. Bella Armstrong picked up three wickets as our girls restricted Wellington to 112, a target Auckland reached with four wickets to spare thanks to an unbeaten 25 from Radika Patel.
In round two Auckland lost to Otago by 10 runs and the third round match against Canterbury was washed out.
In round four Claire McKavanagh (32no) and Jesse Prasad (27) helped Auckland post a total of 134/8 against Central Districts. CD looked to be coasting the game when they reached 82/3 in reply but Armstrong, Liz Olney and Prasad all claimed two wickets to instigate a collapse which saw them fall 10 runs short.
Auckland’s most convincing victory came in round five when they defeated Northern Districts by a mammoth 104 run margain. Prasad (40), Olney (33) and Patel led our girls to a total of 153/5 batting first, to which ND could only reply with 49 as skipper Olney bagged a five wicket haul.
This set up a final against Central Districts however some untimely rain put a dampener on proceedings and the game had to be reduced to 20 overs per side and moved to an artificial pitch.
CD batted first and posted a healthy total of 126/4. Our girls then got off to a slow start in reply falling to 18/3, but an 77 run fourth wicket partnership between Olney (23) and Armstrong (44) brought Auckland back into the game.
However the asking rate eventually proved to be too much as CD held on for victory by the closest of margains.
Despite the result of the final Auckland could be very proud of their performance at the tournament.
On the individual front the captain Olney finished second in the competitio’s MVP standings while Armstrong wasn’t far behind in fifth. Olney (98) was the fourth leading run scorer with Prasad following closely behind in sixth with 90. Olney again featured in the bowling ranks with 11 wickets to her name – the second best mark in the tournament with Armstrong fifth on that list.
Round One v Wellington
Wellington 112 (B Armstrong 3/22, L Olney 2/9) lost to Auckland 113/6 (R Patel 25no) by four wickets.
Round Two v Otago
Otago 116/8 defeated Auckland 106 by 10 runs.
Round Three v Canterbury
Auckland drew with Canterbury – match abandoned, no play
Round Four v Central Districts
Auckland 134/8 (C McKavanagh 32no, J Prasad 27) defeated Central Districts 124 (L Olney 2/12, J Prasad 2/18, B Armstrong 2/19) by 10 runs.
Round Five v Northern Districts
Auckland 153/5 (J Prasad 40, L Olney 33, R Patel 26) defeated Northern Districts 49 (L Olney 5/11, B Armstrong 2/17) by 104 runs.
Final v Central Districts
Central Districts 126/4 defeated Auckland 119/6 (B Armstrong 44, L Olney 23) by 7 runs.
For full stats and scorecards from the tournament follow the link to the Cric HQ site: