Despite a wicket that would not appear to suit, Alex Fallas spun Hibiscus Coast to victory in Auckland's A1 one-day cricket competition on Saturday.
Fallas took six wickets for 20 runs from 8.1 overs of leg spin, as Grafton were bundled out for 84 at Orewa's Victor Eaves Park.
Opening bowler Hamish Syrett took two wickets for 19, before Hibiscus Coast went on to win by nine wickets.
But it was Fallas' leg spinners that destroyed any resistance. "It was a really good day with the ball. I bowl leg spin, so sometimes I go for plenty. But sometimes it clicks," Fallas says.
It was the first grass wicket of the season, with previous matches having been played on an artificial surface. And at this early stage of the season, it is green and appears seamer-friendly.
But Fallas says it is still possible to succeed as a spinner on such a pitch, and he points to the success of Australian leg-spinning legend Shane Warne on Brisbane's Gabba ground, traditionally a pace-friendly wicket.
Fallas' six wickets were also his first of the season, having only bowled four overs in previous games.
Hibiscus Coast's response was dominated by Nathan Bland who had time to post a half-century despite the team only needing 85, and finished unbeaten on 55, with seven fours and a six.
Jordan Schofield made 21 but was the only wicket to fall.
This Saturday, Hibiscus Coast play Auckland University at Victor Eaves Park, with play starting at noon.
Meanwhile, Hibiscus Coast's C1 side repeated the dose over opposition from the same club, beating Grafton by 121 runs.
Hibiscus Coast got 233 for seven wickets from their 45 overs, with opener Harrison Burnard making 83, his second 50 of the season. Grafton got 121 for nine.
Sam Olufson led the attack, with five wickets for 32. This week they play Ellerslie at Stanmore Bay.
- Rodney Times
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