Knights topple Aces, Spirit downed by Hearts
Published on 22 Dec 2019
It was a day of mixed fortunes for the two Northern Districts sides in the Dream11 Super Smash as the Knights overcame the Auckland Aces, but the SkyCity Hamilton Northern Spirit were defeated by the Auckland Hearts.
The first game saw a Spirit side high on confidence struggle to contain the Hearts opening pair, as they raced passed 80 in the ninth over.
A succession of wickets pulled the innings back for the Spirit, with Lauren Heaps and Charlotte Sarsfield taking four wickets between them, including that of the dangerous Anna Peterson for 61, to have the Hearts 114/4 after 15 overs.
A late surge from the Hearts saw them take their score to 167/5 with Sarsfield taking another wicket.
Sarsfield would finish with two wickets and Heaps with three, with both bowlers also coming close to hat-tricks.
The Spirit chase suffered an early setback when the in-form Katie Gurrey was sensationally caught by Holly Huddleston, and when fellow opener Bernadine Bezuidenhout was also caught by Huddleston in the seventh over with the score at 45, the Spirit were looking at an uphill battle to chase the target.
Felicity Leydon-Davis began building a nice partnership with Kate Anderson as the pair added 40, but Leydon-Davis' dismissal with the score at 85 made the challenge even more difficult.
In the search of fast runs, Brooke Halliday, Eimear Richardson and Anderson all managed to find the fence, but not frequently enough and they were all dismissed by the time the score was at 113.
Lily Mulivai and Olivia Lobb tried to do the impossible, but the Hearts total proved too much as the Spirit finished on 136/6, 31 runs shy of the Hearts.
Similar to the earlier game, the openers made a fast start in the first innings as they also made their way to 80 in the ninth over, but this time they were in charcoal and pink, not blue.
Tim Seifert and Anton Devcich played some wonderful strokes in their 80-run partnership before the latter was dismissed for 25.
Seifert kept going however, and soon notched his first half-century of the season off 32 balls.
When he was eventually dismissed for 75, he had laid the platform at the top of the order for the Knights to kick-on to a big total, with the score at 125/2 after 14 overs.
A few quiet overs saw the Aces pull the game back slightly, but some big hitting late from Daryl Mitchell and Scott Kuggeleijn boosted the score to 195/5.
As good as their start with the bat was, the Knights' start with the ball was even better, with the the Aces' destructive top three of Martin Guptill, Colin Munro and Glenn Phillips all back in the sheds with inside six overs with just 41 on the board - Brett Randell accounting for Munro and Phillips and Kuggeleijn getting Guptill.
While the wickets were prized scalps, crucially the Aces had failed to score fast runs at the start of the innings, so they were always playing catch-up with a few batsmen already gone.
It got better the next over when Mark Chapman was caught sharply by Randell off the bowling of Anurag Verma, but Craig Cachopa and Corey Anderson started clearing the fences and looked like they could threaten the Knights' total.
Their resistance didn't last too long however, as Scott Kuggeleijn returned to the attack to dismiss the pair and take his wicket tally for the evening to three.
The asking rate was too great for the Aucklanders, with the score now 128/6 and the equation 68 runs required off 29 balls.
Daryl Mitchell would get among the wickets and Peter Bocock effected a run out as the Aces looked to do the impossible, but they would eventually finish 28 runs short on 167/8.