Upper Hutt cricket has a field day
Cricket remains a funny game.
With 15 wickets captured in just 40 overs, Upper Hutt's premier side had a barely comprehensible three sessions of Pearce Cup cricket at Trentham Memorial Park on Saturday.
After making the top tier six-team cup for the first time in four seasons, Upper Hutt are odds-on to claim a second win after putting the much-fancied Taita through the wringer.
Taita, who started the game third in the cup and in the reckoning for a place in the final, will not know what hit them.
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Overall they lost 15 wickets as Upper Hutt dismissed them for 52 in 30 overs and then, late in the day, needed only nine more to reduce their opponents to a hapless 26/5.
Taita's second batting collapse followed Upper Hutt hitting up what seems a formidable 156.
The wash up, on a day where 25 wickets fell all up, is Taita will start the game's second day with five wickets remaining and needing another 78 runs to make their opponents bat again.
The day belonged with Upper Hutt's bowlers, naturally, with Nishant Desai's figures of four wickets for six runs off six overs the statistical standout.
The medium-pacer's haul followed good spells from Ollie Newton (1/13) and Matt Bacon (3/24) while Upper Hutt skipper Dan Henderson brought himself on as second change to snare two wickets for four.
Bacon and Newton, who have both played for the Wellington Firebirds, did the second innings damage with hauls of 3/9 and 2/12 respectively as Taita's top five were again reduced to rubble against the new ball.
Between Taita's two batting collapses, Desai finished as Upper Hutt's top scorer with 29 runs off 64 balls while Bacon (26) and Newton (25) almost matched him on a day where the trio of local all-rounders could do no wrong.