Career-best effort from Rippon sees Otago home

Otago’s Angus McKenzie bowls to Greg Hay on the last day of the Plunket Shield match between ...
Otago’s Angus McKenzie bowls to Greg Hay on the last day of the Plunket Shield match between Otago and Central Districts at the University Oval yesterday. Photo: Linda Robertson.
Otago spinner Michael Rippon took five wickets in 14 balls to lead Otago to victory on the final day of its Plunket Shield match against Central Districts in Dunedin yesterday.

Otago ended up winning by 44 runs at the University of Otago Oval, grabbing its second win of the season.

The match was evenly poised heading into the final session but Rippon did his magic and Otago won with just more than 10 overs left to play.

Otago made a sporting declaration after adding 70 runs in the morning. Rippon helped add some runs, but his heroics were to come later.

The declaration left Central Districts with the task of reaching 333 in 78 overs.

Central started well and went along at a decent rate. Greg Hay hit a 50 and Brad Schmulian scored 64. It was tight at tea, when the visiting side needed 173 more runs with seven wickets in hand and 33 overs left to face.

Tom Bruce and Schmulian stayed together and the impetus continued with some solid batting from Dane Cleaver and Josh Clarkson.

But Rippon then bowled Clarkson and the collapse was on for the visiting team.

Doug Bracewell came to the wicket for the visitors and he took 16 off one Matt Bacon over.

But Bracewell could not stop Rippon. The first ball of the left arm wrist spinner’s next over had Bracewell prodding forward and he was given out leg before wicket.

Two balls later Blair Tickner was dismissed, caught on the onside by Anaru Kitchen.

Bruce was down the other end and he managed to see off a Kitchen over.

Rippon then came back on and grabbed the ninth wickets of the innings when he had Jayden Lennox caught at first slip by Nick Kelly.

The next ball, the match was over when Rippon had Stags tailender Ray Toole trapped in front for a first-ball duck

In those 14 balls, Rippon had taken five wickets for just one run — an effort to be mighty proud of.

Rippon finished with figures of six wickets for 66 runs and grabbed his second five-wicket bag for Otago.

It was a career best from Rippon and Rae had earlier taken his 100th first class wicket for Otago.

Michael Rae also bowled with plenty of fire throughout the match and had three wickets in the second innings to grab eight wickets for the match.

Otago would be glad to bag the win, after it performed with the bat and ball to finish the game off.

In the other games, no play was possible in Wellington yesterday because of the weather. Wellington is 317 runs ahead on the first innings — Northern Districts is 97 for four wickets in its first bat — but some declarations will need to have to be made in the match.

In Auckland, Canterbury requires 339 on the last day, sitting on 83 for two wickets, to grab an outright win.


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