Matches at vital stages

The form book was thrown out of the window on day one of the latest round of two-day matches in the Major Championship with leaders Suburbs New Lynn facing a large run chase against Birkenhead City.

Birkenhead City have runs on the board thanks to a century from Terry Crabb.

Suburbs began the day with an 18-point cushion at the top of the ladder but will now have to work hard for first innings points on day two after Crabb struck 17 boundaries in a sublime 134.

The left hander's efforts helped Birkenhead to a total of 289 before they were bowled out with Nic Montgomery (32) and Ullrich Boshoff (26) offering Crabb valuable support.

At stumps Suburbs New Lynn were 4/0.

The match between Takapuna and Grafton United is in the balance after day one at Onewa Domain.

Grafton posted a solid total of 233 batting first.

The hosts used nine bowlers in their attempts to oust the visiting batsmen.

Aaron Watson claimed 4/66 from 20 overs while Elliott Herd and Greg Johnson bagged two each.

Johnson and Kyle Dunsmore then batted out the remaining 13 overs of the day taking Takapuna to 25/0 at the close, setting up an intriguing second day.

Reigning champions East Coast Bays ended day one of their match with bottom of the ladder Howick Pakuranga on 216/9 at Windsor Park.

Batting first the hosts battled through 94 overs with Donovan Deeble (47) and Rowan Bezuidenhout (44no) top scoring.

Aces seamer Donovan Grobbelaar sent down 24 impressive overs for the visitors, conceding only 40 runs while picking up three wickets but Patrick Cairns returned the best figures, claiming 4/37 from his 24.

Bays currently sit third on the ladder, 20 points behind leaders Suburbs New Lynn, while Howick are just three points behind Grafton in the race to avoid the drop.

North Shore looked poised to secure first innings points against Eden Roskill at Devonport Domain after the first day's play on Saturday.

The visitors batted first and were in trouble in the early stages, falling to 23/4.

A half century from Andrew Mansale went some way to rebuilding the innings but a relentless Shore attack contained Roskill for 70 overs before they were bowled out for 135.

Aidan O'Connor returned 3/11 from 10 overs while all six Shore bowlers took at least one wicket.

In reply Shore reached 85/4 in 28 overs.

Skipper Josh Tasman-Jones once again led from the front with 42 but four wickets from Roskill coach Azhar Abbas have kept his side in the match.

North Shore Times