Too few runs on the board let Volts down

Mitchell McClenaghan bowls for the Otago Volts earlier this year. Photo: GREGOR RICHARDSON
Mitchell McClenaghan bowls for the Otago Volts earlier this year. Photo: GREGOR RICHARDSON
An inability to score enough runs is fast becoming the handicap for the Volts as the playoffs slide out of view.

The side has hit 200 just the once in its seven Super Smash games so far and an inability to put together any partnerships is proving the Achilles heel of the side.

The players have scored just four half-centuries and three times have scored below 150.

As players get better and bats get heavier a score of 180 and above is needed for teams to be in the hunt to win a game of Twenty20.

But Otago has only got above 180 in one of its games this season and that was the first match of the season when it triumphed over Auckland at Molyneux Park. It scored 219 that day under the Central Otago sun but it was a one off and was not a case of things to come.

Too often Otago has been three or four wickets down before it has even reached the halfway mark of the innings.

Having only 20 overs to play with, the batting side needs to maintain wickets and get partnerships going. That has not been the case for Otago as it goes about rebuilding its innings too early in the innings.

The two games against Wellington the side has played reflect how the Volts are struggling
with the bat.

At the game at the University of Otago Oval, Otago batted first against Wellington and found itself 68 for four wickets in the 10th over.

On Sunday, in the capital, it found itself 51 for five wickets in the ninth over and it could never recover.

Neil Broom is the leading run-scorer for Otago with 197 runs. That leaves him seventh best for all the batsmen in the Super Smash competition.

Otago’s tactic of recent years is to bat first, set a decent total and then defend it. It is a positive-sounding proposition but relies on getting runs on the board. Too often that has not worked.

The side’s most experienced batsmen: Broom, Hamish Rutherford and Anaru Kitchen, have all shown some good touches but it has failed to come together within a single game.

The bowlers have performed better than the batsmen but too often have had nothing to help them, with too small a total to defend.

Import Mitch McClenaghan has bowled well and looked threatening in the past couple of games. It was his 200th game of T20 against Wellington on Sunday.

But T20 is very much a batsman’s game. Score plenty of runs and the side will be in with a chance. Unfortunately Otago has not and is coming up well short in too many of its games.

Otago has three games left in its Super Smash season, the next game against Canterbury in Christchurch on Saturday. It then faces Auckland next Monday in Auckland before ending the regular season against Northern Knights on Waitangi Day.


Scoring woes
v Auckland 219/7
v Canterbury 124
v Northern 156/8
v Central 170/8
v Wellington 167/5
v Central 145/9 (17 overs)
v Wellington 137/9

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