Vaughan Tarrant’s first senior century and a tight final over gave his Temuka side victory over Star in the match of the day at Aorangi Oval.
On the hottest summer day of cricket this season, Tarrant continued his stellar season as he ticked off more statistical boxes, this time scoring 100 not out, bringing up his ton off the final ball of the Temuka innings and adding to his first senior hat-trick achieved earlier in the season.
Temuka won the toss at Aorangi and after the run-scoring feast during the first class matches the previous weekend were looking forward to testing their own skills on the same deck. Things didn’t start quite to plan losing their first wicket with one run on the scoreboard but Johnny Geddis soon resurrected that as he pulled and hooked any short deliveries.
However, Geddis probably got ahead of himself as he looked to dominate the bowlers and was out caught with the total at 50.
Willie Stone continued on eventually bringing up his second fifty of the season before becoming a Brown brothers’ victim for 58 and Temuka still had a lot of work to do at 129-6 to post a competitive total.
Tarrant stood up, dominating the strike and partnerships as he moved Temuka’s score past 200. His innings included 12 fours and 3 sixes and comfortably surpassed his previous best score in senior cricket of 58 and when he was told his score was 99, and managed a single off the final ball he had guided Temuka to a very good score of 246-8 from their 45 overs.
For Star Matt and Blair Brown and Alex McDuff all took two wickets each and all the bowlers toiled hard in the hot conditions.
A run chase of 5.5 runs per over is never easy over a longer match and with both openers back in the shed with only 9 runs on the board, Star’s chances looked grim.
However, Matt Brown and Danny Campbell had different ideas as they joined in a century partnership with their running between the wickets a feature as they worked the singles as well as boundaries onto their run sheets.
The introduction of leg-spin proved an inspired decision as Nick Maguire appreciated not only the turn but the higher bounce of the Aorangi pitch and he went on to return figures of 4-37. He dismissed Brown (63) and Campbell (62) in quick succession and his spell slowed Star as they slumped from 121-3 to 154-6.
Now the second ‘Brown brother’ Blair, stepped up as he found support from the lower order with McDuff (17) and captain Jeremy Lane (13) helping the total along until it looked all a bit difficult to the independent observers with the score 204-9 and ten runs an over still required.
Obviously Star, and especially Brown had different ideas as he found ways to score runs, ruining Kevin Teahen’s bowling figures as his consistency of line and length was punished with an array of stunning shots.
Dale Warwood did his part by defending solidly and giving the strike back to Brown and the pressure went back on the Temuka decision makers as the final over was about to start with Star needing 11 runs for what had seemed an unlikely victory earlier in the day.
Captain Hayden Broker took himself out of the attack and threw the ball to century-maker Tarrant, no doubt with instructions to not ruin his big day with a loss.
Warwood duly took the single off the first ball to give Brown the strike, but Tarrant who had gone for 23 runs off his previous three overs was back to his miserly best as the batsmen couldn’t find the boundary, eventually only conceding 4 runs to finish his day off in the best possible manner.
At Ashbury Park Roncalli/Celtic batted first against Timaru and Mike de Joux with 42 got them off to a great start before a brilliant catch to Arthavidu stopped his innings and then Roncalli/Celtic returned to type with several of the young batsmen getting in but not persevering and when number six Grant Watt was last out for 17, Roncalli/Celtic had only put 119 on the board.
The biggest problem for the batsmen had been Dwayne Richardson who to took his first senior five wicket bag on the way to the great figures of 5-15, achieved by keeping the ball up and in line – sounds simple but very effective.
In reply Timaru lost just four wickets on their way to victory with Josh Dick finding some form again to finish 48 not out and get his team home comfortably.
In Waimate, Celtic were far too good for the hosts, dismissing them for just 84 with Ben Watson picking up 4 wickets and Dan Laming 3, while for Waimate only Connor Farrell showed much fight top-scoring with 36.
Celtic knocked the target off in just 13 overs for the loss of two wickets with Dan Laming top-scoring with an unbeaten 39.
Next week Friday night T20 returns with no Saturday senior cricket with the Hawke Cup match against North Otago being played.