Central Districts batsman Mathew Sinclair runs through to
complete his century during his team's Plunket Shield match
against Otago at the University Oval in Dunedin yesterday.
The other batsman is Bevan Small. Photo by Linda Robertson.
What this match needs is the 50 overs back it lost on the
opening day due to poor weather.
Otago should be able to bat long enough to ensure its Plunket
Shield match against Central Districts at the University Oval
ends in a draw when the game concludes today.
The pitch is still playing well and Otago leads by 15 runs
with nine wickets in hand.
The home side posted 427 but Central overhauled the total,
thanks largely to Mathew Sinclair. The veteran right-hander
scored 142 to help his side reach 439.
At stumps, Otago was 37 for one in its second innings and
coach Vaughn Johnson could not see a situation where his side
could build a challenging lead and still have enough time
left to dismiss Central.
''I can't see us setting CD a target but I can still see a
result if one of the two sides does not bat well,'' Johnson
''If we end up getting bowled out, I guess there is still a
''It would have been nice to being going into the last day
with the team batting last chasing something. It would have
been a decent day's cricket but it has not turned out that
''It is a pretty flat and not a wicket, conducive for getting
a whole lot of wickets on. But I thought our guys generally
stuck to the task and, on the whole, bowled well.''
Central resumed on 115 for one, with plenty of work ahead to
make the game safe.
Otago helped out with some patchy bowling. Neil Wagner seemed
obsessed with dropping it in short and giving Carl Cachopa
Cachopa got the better on the encounter, whacking 24 runs
from the 32 deliveries he faced from Wagner, including a
brutish lofted drive over extra cover.
Perhaps Wagner thought he could have executed the shot better
because he had a few more suggestions for the batsman while
his team-mate chased the ball up the embankment.
When Wagner pitched the ball up he looked far more
threatening. Ian Butler was also guilty of engaging in too
The sledging was neither productive, nor particularly
successful. Cachopa made 55 and Jamie How, who also got
plenty of batting tips, made 64.
The captain Sam Wells got the breakthrough when he strangled
How down the leg side. It was just further proof there is no
justice in cricket, though.
He sent his first three deliveries down leg, two of which
were dispatched for boundaries and one was so wide the
batsman could not catch up with it. His fourth delivery was
not much better either, but How's attempt at a glance only
found the keeper's gloves.
How's departure bought Sinclair to the wicket. His innings
could have been snuffed out early when he offered two sharp
caught and bowled chances to off-spinner Mark Craig, the
second of which would have taken a mighty effort.
Central did not have the morning session entirely its own
way. Ryan ten Doeschate bowled Cachopa and Butler trapped
Will Young lbw for one.
Kruger van Wyk looked unlucky to be given out lbw just before
lunch, leaving his side 241 for five at the break.
Sinclair got over his scratchy start and put the bad ball
away to move closer to his 36th first-class 100 and eighth
He brought up the milestone when he tucked a delivery from
Ryan ten Doeschate behind square. He raised both arms in
triumph and acknowledged his team-mates' applause with a nod
of his bat.
Peter Trego (35) and Roald Badenhorst (27) offered good
support and Bevan Small chipped in with 28.
Wagner got some cheap wickets at the end of the innings and
finished with four for 103. He bowled well in patches but it
was not one of his great performances.
Otago was left with a minimum of 15 overs to face. Aaron
Redmond made a bright start, driving Trego through the covers
for a brace of boundaries in the opening over.
Even with the late dismissal of Hamish Rutherford for 15, the
match still seems destined for a draw. Of course, Otago lost
eight wickets in about an hour against the same opposition in
Queenstown last season.