Hutt District vs Petone-Eastbourne Report
The third round of the Hazlett Trophy saw HDCC travel to take on their neighbours & closest rivals, Petone-Eastbourne. Upon winning the toss captain Adam Williams chose to insert Petone, a decision that immediately paid dividends. Opening bowler & club stalwart Fergus Martin bowled unchanged for 10 over’s collecting the all important first four wickets.
At 54-5 Petone were in a world of trouble. Enter Leigh Kelly who decided attack was the best form of defence. His innings of 63 not out was supported by Daniel Myers (40) & Mark Hewson (21), which enabled Petone-Eastbourne to post 198 in their first innings. Fergus Martin was the pick of the bowlers rewarded with his consistency and finishing with 4/44 off 13 overs.
Hutt didn’t get off to the best of starts & early on were struggling at 2/28 with both openers back in the hutch. A small partnership between Matt Wills & Nishant Desai combined for 38 before Desai was hit in front. Wills put on a further 39 with Dominic Brown before he gave away his wicket on 43. Williams joined Brown & the pair put on a further 60 runs when play was called for the day, with Hutt sitting on 166/4. Brown looking in ominous form on 60 not out & Williams patiently ending the day on 22 not out.
Day 2 got off to a rollicking start for Hutt with the overnight batsman cashing in on a flat wicket & lightning quick outfield. Williams took the attack to the bowlers & was ably supported by Brown & by the time Brown departed just short of his maiden century for the club with 97, the score at 286, the pair had added 181 & Williams had already raised his bat for his hundred.
3 balls later another wicket fell & Williams was joined by Darren Cudby & they upped the tempo to add another 84 before Williams innings was ended when he was caught on the boundary for 137 off 155 balls, including 16x 4’s and 4x 6’s. Cudby lifted the tempo again as he pushed for his hundred & was unfortunately last man out for a well compiled 86, enabling Hutt to finish on 432 with a massive first innings lead of 234 with 52 overs left in the day to push for an outright victory.
Early wickets came to the fore again for Hutt through Kyle Hitchman picking up 3 quick ones with the new ball & soon Petone-Eastbourne were reeling at 37/4. Some disciplined batting followed & although the Hutt bowlers were making things uncomfortable with some lively & cunning spells the batsman managed to bat out the overs for a draw finishing 162/7. Hitchman was the pick of the bowlers finishing with 3/24 off 10 & Iain McPeake bowled with pace & bounce to finish with 2/51 off 13.
First innings points was enough to keep Hutt on top of the Hazlett Trophy standings with just 2, 2-day games remaining, but now with batting and bowling units in good form & brimming with confidence, a good outright victory in the next round may be enough to secure the title.