Canterbury dominate day one
Thursday, 21 February 2013
Anaru Kitchen top scored for the Aces with 41
The Aces have a large hole to dig themselves out of after a day one effort that saw Canterbury only 56 runs from a first innings lead with nine wickets in hand.
The Wizards finished off a dominant day by putting together a 106 run opening partnership between George Worker (35) and captain Peter Fulton (80*) to finish the day on 128/1.
Some tight bowling earlier on made it hard work for the Canterbury pair but they were good enough to weather that storm and make the most of their hard work with Fulton in particular cashing in as the day drew to a close.
That batting effort backed up an impressive bowling performance that was led by the unlikely figure of some-time all-rounder Shannan Stewart. The middle-order batsman returned the scarcely believable figures of 5/42 off his 12 overs and took three wickets in an over to rip the heart out of the Aces top order.
Auckland sported a new opening pair in the shape of Michael Barry and Dusan Hakaraia and they made a positive start putting on 37 for the first wicket. Hakaraia's dismissal brought Anaru Kitchen to the wicket and he immediately looked comfortable alongside Barry.
But with the score at 60 Stewart turned the game on its head. With the first ball of his over he got Barry to knick one through to Tom Latham then with the next delivery clean bowled the in-form Craig Cachopa. Gareth Hopkins survived the hat-trick ball but three balls later also had his stumps knocked over to give Stewart three wickets for the over and leave the Aces reeling at 60/4.
It was uphill from then for the Aces with only Ananru Kitchen (41) and Colin de Grandhomme (38) from the top order able to provide any significant runs. It was left to the last pair of Michael Bates and Matt Quinn to add 28 for the 10th wicket and drag the Aces to a total of 173.
Day two poses a huge challenge for the Aces as they need to put together a bowling and fielding performance of top quality to get themselves back in contention.