Volts need to lift to face dangerous Northern Districts outfit

Photo: ODT files.
Photo: ODT files.
Otago got Finn-Allened on Wednesday.

What is that you say?

That is when Finn Allen goes berserk and pummels 168 from 110.

The Volts could have played better. They lost early wickets and the rebuild was painfully slow.

But with the Auckland opener in full flight at Eden Park Outer Oval there was not much else to do other than shrug.

The bigger picture — well, it was great to see the Black Caps discard actually fashion an innings.

That is not to say he did not thump the ball into another time zone regularly, because he did. But he also paced the innings quite nicely. And it was not easy going.

Pretty much everyone else struggled to get going.

Otago’s Llew Johnson was a notable exception. He clouted 68 from 36 in a muscular innings.

The Volts will be hoping for more of that against Northern Districts in Hamilton tomorrow.

Coach Dion Ebrahim could not be reached for comment.

But it is unlikely he dished up some tough love to the bowling unit. Everyone took turns at getting smashed by Allen. However, they were all spared at the other end, which meant most of the bowling unit escaped with a reasonable runs per over rate.

Luke Georgeson got the worst treatment. His 5.3 overs cost 53 runs.

Dean Foxcroft watched three consecutive deliveries sail over the rope. That spoiled his figures as well.

He did score some runs, though. The Volts skipper has endured a lean run so far this summer, so his knock of 62 would have helped lift some pressure.

Unfortunately, it did not lift much pressure off Otago's shoulders. He used up 108 balls to get there.

He did combined in a 73-run stand with Thorn Parkes (78).

The Volts had slumped to 53 for three, so the pair were within their rights to take some time.

But that rebuild just took too long. Johnson’s innings helped give the Volts a sniff, but Allen sniffed at that.

He crushed 13 fours and 11 sixes in a brutal onslaught.

Otago has stuck with the same 12.

They will lean on seamers Jacob Duffy and Matt Bacon to strike at the top off the innings, while Parkes has scored back-to-back half centuries.

Dale Phillips has enjoyed a good run as well. He struck some good form in red-ball cricket and notched his maiden list A century in the win against Auckland in the game in Invercargill.

Northern Districts have won both their games and lead the standings. They have a quality bowling lineup to chose from.

Kristian Clarke and Matt Fisher are two of the more exiting bowlers emerging through the ranks, and with Scott Kuggeleijn spearheading the attack they have decent three-pronged attack.

All-rounder Brett Hampton is one of the bigger hitters in the competition and is fresh from a punishing knock of 88 not out.

Jeet Raval has shifted down the order and is scoring runs. They are a dangerous team.

Ford Trophy

Hamilton, tomorrow, 10.30pm

Otago: Hamish Rutherford, Luke Georgeson, Dean Foxcroft (captain), Dale Phillips, Thorn Parkes, Llew Johnson, Max Chu, Ben Lockrose, Travis Muller, Jacob Duffy, Matt Bacon, Ollie White.