Mid Canterbury falls to North Otago side

North Otago beat Mid Canterbury by 117 runs in their Hawke Cup clash at Aorangi Park, Timaru, on Sunday.

Jeremiah Shields (31) and Lachlan Kingan (13) added 30 runs for the first wicket, while Lewie Johnson (20) and Scott Kitto (20) took North Otago to 90 runs but 23 runs later North Otago lost two further wickets to teeter at 113 runs.

Strong, sensible batting from Harry Semple (34) saw North Otago through to 185 runs before the final wicket fell. Tom Middleton, four for eight off seven overs, and James Southby, three for 51, were the most successful Mid Canterbury bowlers.

North Otago’s Cameron Grubb had the ball on a bit of string and pressurised Mid Canterbury’s batsmen with his positive length, taking seven wickets for 50 to dismiss them for 128.

In a destructive session, Grubb claimed four wickets, securing a 57-run first innings lead for North Otago.

Des Kruger (39) and Shaun Stagg (31 not out) held the side together.

At stumps on the first day North Otago (12 not out) had a 69-run lead.

North Otago lost five second innings wickets in the first session on the second day and went to lunch at 137 for five; an overall lead of 194 runs with two sessions of play remaining.

In the 56th over in North Otago’s second innings wicketkeeper batsman, Duncan Drew became the top scoring North Otago batsman in representative cricket, passing Bob Wilson’s previous record.

North Otago’s declaration for five wickets came with the total at 202 for six. This left Mid Canterbury the task of scoring 260 runs to win in the final day’s remaining 50 overs.

In the final innings North Otago took the first two wickets at 22, the third and fourth wickets went at 30 and 34, and the fifth and sixth wickets saw Mid Canterbury 51 for six.

Des Kruger fell for 46, and Mid Canterbury slipped to 95 for seven, when Mason James took a superb catch on the boundary, off the bowling of Scott Kitto.

The last three batsmen added 25 runs before Tom Middleton became Jeremy Smith’s second superb catch to give North Otago victory.

 - Terry O'Neill

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