Otago in with chance

Wellington Firebirds bowler Iain McPeake. Photo: Christine O'Connor
Wellington Firebirds bowler Iain McPeake. Photo: Christine O'Connor
The Otago Volts are well in the hunt going into the final day of their match against Wellington at the University of Otago Oval.

The match progressed in the third day yesterday with Otago getting one run ahead of Wellington on the first innings, although the days of getting first-innings points in the longer form of domestic cricket have long gone.

Wellington started its second innings in the middle of the afternoon and by stumps was 199 for six wickets.

Wellington can not win the Plunket Shield after Central Districts had an outright win yesterday so it will be interesting to see what its is attitude today.

Otago made some significant breakthroughs when it mattered when Wellington batted and no-one got away on it.

Tom Blundell looks the biggest threat to the hopes of Otago getting an outright win and he will resume on 57.

Jacob Duffy and Matt Bacon took a couple of wickets each while Anaru Kitchen picked up the wicket of Andrew Fletcher later in the day. Wellington went into its shell as stumps loomed and scored three runs in the final five overs.

Otago will be pushing to get the final four wickets early today and then go hunting for a rare win at first-class level. Whatever happens, it will be good to know Otago has run Wellington close with better bowling and batting from the home team.

In the other games, Central Districts took a major step towards winning the Plunket Shield with a one-wicket win over Northern Districts at Napier.

Central Districts needed 174 to win outright and got there, although it was touch and go. Skipper Greg Hay scored 59 to help the chase and the last wicket batsmen managed to get the nine runs for the victory.

Ish Sodhi bowled well in the second innings to take five wickets - and nine for the match.

At Rangiora, Auckland was chasing 351 for an outright victory. Canterbury got through to 328 in its first innings yesterday as the weather finally came good. Auckland then forfeited its first innings. Canterbury knocked up a quick 22 before leaving Auckland with a target of 351 to win.

The Auckland side lost key man Martin Guptill early but got through to 80 for two at the end of play, needing another 271 to win.

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