Rain, Auckland batsmen hold off Otago's push for consolation win

Mitch Renwick
Mitch Renwick
Otago's push for victory on the final day of the season was thwarted by some wet weather and decent Auckland batting.

Play got under way at the later time of 12.45pm after early rain left the surface damp.

The Aces resumed on 198 for one, and needed another 38 runs to make the Volts bat again.

A few quick wickets could have set up an interesting finish. But Graeme Beghin and Matt McEwan had other ideas. McEwan, who came in as the nightwatchman, belted 53 runs from 58 balls before he was undone.

His departure did not trigger the sort of collapse Otago would have been hoping for.

Beghin pushed on from 110 to 140, and Glenn Phillips (34) and William O'Donnell (26) kept the resistance on the front foot.

By tea Auckland had reached 373 for five and had a lead of 137 runs. With a result unlikely, the captains agreed to an early finish.

Retiring Otago top order batsman Brad Wilson featured in the last act of the game. He made a rare appearance at the bowling crease and delivered a maiden.

''It would have been awesome if he got a wicket,'' Volts coach Rob Walter said.

''It is always sad to say goodbye to a stalwart of the team.''

Pace bowler Warren Barnes has also had his final spell for the Volts. The 26-year-old is calling it quits after an injury-prone four-year stint for Otago.

The draw left the Volts stranded at the bottom of the competition standings. It lost its first six games before bouncing back with a win against Wellington last week.

While it was not a good first-class season by any definition, Walter said there had been signs of progress which the team could build on for next summer.

Mitch Renwick scored his maiden first-class hundred in the game. Rookie keeper Max Chu has looked a polished performer behind the stumps and dug in with a gutsy 41, and Matt Bacon took 16 wickets in the last two rounds.

''[Mitch] has sort of threatened the whole season. He has got starts in probably 85% of the innings he has had, he just hasn't been able to kick on,'' Walter said.

''It was good to see him get his first hundred.

''And Max has kept well in all the games he has kept in and took some wonderful catches. He was able to grind out a 40 which was good to see.''

In Hamilton, Northern Districts finished with a 142-run win against Central Districts.

Central was left chasing 377, but was all out for 234.

Kieran Noema-Barnett led the chase with 101. But spin duo Ish Sodhi (four for 99) and Mitchell Santner (three for 28) helped close the game out.

Central, though, had already secured the title and will get to stick the Plunket Shield in the trophy cabinet for the winter.

 

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