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Canterbury extend lead in Plunket Shield
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Canterbury extend lead in Plunket Shield

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Canterbury strengthened their hold on the Plunket Shield lead when beating Northern Districts at Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Sunday.
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Wellington moved into second place after their win over Otago.

Northern Districts batted on to post 364 with Scott Kuggeleijn hitting 28 and Jono Boult 47. But in the end it was the Canterbury leg-spinner Todd Asle who ended things by breaking the 53-run last wicket stand to end with 2-73 while Matt Henry's final figures were 4-97 and Hamish Bennett took 3-73.

Canterbury needed 159 to win and made a poor start when losing Rob Nicol for two and Tom Latham for eight to be 15-2. However, Dean Brownlie applied himself for a little over three hours to score64 and while he was out with 38 runs still required the middle-order did the job. Hamish Nicholls was unbeaten  on 34 and Brad Cachopa on 22.

Kuggeleijn  took 2-49 for ND.

Otago's second innings collapse in which they lost their last five wickets for 20 runs and all 10 wickets for 137 runs gave Wellington a chance they wasted no time in claiming to take an eight-wicket win in Invercargill.

Otago had put on 92 for the first wicket before Luke Woodcock had Neil Broom caught from Andy McKay's bowling for 46. And even when Aaron Redmond fell 19 runs later there was no sign of the calamity that was about to hit Otago.  But off-spinner Jeetan Patel and pace man Andy McKay worked in tandem to scythe through the home team.

Jimmy Neesham managed 60 from 47 balls but he was the last real resistance. Patel took 4-75 from 32 overs while McKay took 3-52 and Woodcock 2-25.

That left Wellington with 82 runs for victory, a total they achieve3d in 13.1 overs. Grant Elliott was 27 not out and Michael Pollard 24 not out when victory was secured.

Central Districts' tail put up useful resistance while scoring well enough to leave Auckland few chances of batting for victory in their second innings.

Doug Bracewell scored 36 while Adam Milne was 29 not out and Ajaz Pater contributed 15 at the end as they were all out for 232 – a lead of 348 runs.


Michael Bates took 4-31 for Auckland and Bruce Martin 4-78. Auckland made a poor start losing both openers, Jeet Raval (6) and first innings century maker Martin Guptill (5) and then Craig Cachop for 10 and the two Colins, Munro for seven and de Grandhomme for five between Tim McIntosh found lasting support from Martin.

They each were unbeaten on half-centuries at the close with McIntosh on 57 and Martin on 55. Peter Trego took 2-26 for CD and Ben Wheeler 2-30.

The game ended in a draw.

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