Celtic continued their bright start to the South Canterbury senior season, while the rain ensured Temuka would hold on for their first win of the new season, just as their match with Timaru was in the balance.
Celtic scored a comfortable 107-run win over Waimate at Knottingley Park, thanks to an unbeaten 94 from James Laming and 69 from brother, Dan.
Ben Watson then supported his batsmen by tearing through Waimate’s middle-order on his way to five for 23.
Temuka’s match with Timaru had to be shifted to the artificial pitch of Ashbury Park 3 after the Ashbury Park 4 pitch was left uncovered during overnight rain.
The game dawdled along for both teams’ 20-over batting stints with batsmen struggling to handle the overcast conditions which made the ball move around in the air.
Temuka mustered 71 for six after 20 overs and Timaru responded with 61 for four.
Temuka opening bowlers Matt Woods (two for 14) and Kevin Teahen (two for 28) looked threatening with the moving ball, while Brad Leonard put in another consistent spell and grabbed two wickets. Sam Porter was erratic at times but also bagged two wickets.
Woods then showed his skill with the bat, as he combined with Temuka captain Hayden Broker to put on 108 for the seventh wicket.
Woods only hit two fours and a six off the last ball he faced in his innings of 57 not out, while Broker was dismissed on the same score as he tried to elevate the run-rate.
Temuka finished on 179 for seven.
Josh Dick and Porter went about their run-chase steadily and looked to be getting into their work when the rain, which had threatened all day, finally set in.
With their partnership unbeaten on 45 and Temuka rapidly running out of frontline bowlers with 18 overs remaining, the players left the field for the final time.
At 101 for four, Timaru were 10 runs behind where they needed to be and lost the match as a result.
Broker said he and Woods wanted to bat time.
“We just wanted to stay there and we knew if we could stay together the runs would come.
“You could see at the end there that we started to get a few [big] shots away.
“Clearly, we didn’t bat well in the first 20 overs which is something we will need to work on.”
Timaru captain Zane Sanders said it was frustrating to have the match end when he felt a fightback was on. “Our fielding was a bit sloppy and we let two guys get in on an artificial pitch.
“That’s what Dicko [Dick] and Sam [Porter] looked like they were doing before the rain set in.
“The bowlers bowled in good areas at times but we conceded too many wides.
“I heard it was like 19 wides in the first 20 overs and then only five in the last 25 overs.”
Celtic were never threatened by Waimate, especially when the home team lost opening bowler Simon Murphy to injury just two overs into his spell.
James Laming’s second half century of the campaign and his 141-run third wicket stand with brother, Dan, ensured the defending champions had plenty of runs on the board after finishing at 212 for four.
Part-timer Jason Sew Hoy’s medium pace saw him take two wickets.
Veteran Celtic opening bowler Grant Watt (two for 28) knocked off the top of the Waimate order and then Watson did the rest for his first five-wicket bag for Celtic after making the switch from Roncalli College.
Waimate captain Glen Drake again showed his talent with the bat, making 44, but he found little support from his team-mates. They were eventually rolled for 105 in the 32nd over.