Southland moves toward cup
The Southland cricket team took a major step forward yesterday to another possible shot at challenging for the Hawke Cup following a crushing eight-wicket victory over North Otago in Invercargill during the weekend.
While it was the batsmen who stood up in the previous victory over South Canterbury, it was the bowlers who took charge this time and helped them bank a much needed outright win.
It was former Volts bowler Craig Smith who led the charge in what was his first Hawke Cup fixture for the 2012-13 season.
After Southland captain Jason Domigan won the toss and chose to field, Smith and his fellow Southland bowlers quickly got into their work.
They reduced North Otago to 48 for five at one stage as Smith and Jonathan Hodson knocked the top and middle order over before Michael Grattan with his left-arm spinners finished off the tail.
North Otago were skittled for just 131 in 46.5 overs.
Southland grabbed first innings honours with the loss of four wickets and looked set to rack up a large lead when Ryan Duffy and Rhuebyn Prattley were cruising, putting on 59 for the fifth wicket to have Southland sitting at 147 for four.
However Prattley lost patience and was stumped for 41, his replacement Grattan followed without scoring and it turned into a triple blow when Duffy departed for 61, Southland losing three wickets without scoring a run.
From what was a dominant position they held just a slender 34 run lead at 165 for nine.
Tailenders Mark Beer and Jonathan Hodson however did provide Southland with a very useful 10th wicket partnership putting on a further 60 runs for their team, which included Beer finishing 42 not out batting at 10.
Southland finished with a handy 94 run lead leaving North Otago with work to do to claw their way back into the contest.
When Smith took the first three wickets of North Otago's second innings with 15 runs recorded the visitors' hopes were all but shot.
Beer then grabbed a wicket himself and they were 15 for four not looking like they would even force Southland to bat again.
There was a small North Otago fightback before Grattan joined in on the act running through the North Otago lineup taking four wickets which was backed up by fellow spinner Ryan Meyer who took the last two wickets.
North Otago were all out for 116 meaning Southland required just 21 in their second innings to win. Despite losing Ryan Duffy lbw for nine Southland did it in style.
Southland have their final southern zone showdown against Mid Canterbury on February 23-24 in Invercargill which will determine if they get to challenge for the Hawke Cup this season.
NORTH OTAGO First Innings J Horrell c Fitzgibbon b Smith 16
J Shields lbw Smith 2
B Cant c S Fitzgibbon b Smith 23
S Grobler run out 0
D Drew b Hodson 3
E Smith c Domigan b Hodson 20
S Conlan not out 47
A Sewell c Fitzgibbon b Hodson 0
D Hooper-Smith c Fitzgibbon b Cooke 1
D Sewell c Duffy b Grattan 11
R Whyte c Cooke b Grattan 0
Extras (b 1, lb 4, wd 1, nb 2) 8
TOTAL (wickets 10; 46.5 overs) 131
Fall of wicket: 3 (J Shields, 3.1), 30 (B Cant, 9.5), 30 (S Grobler, 9.6), 46 (D Drew, 14.4), 48 (J Horrell, 15.4), 78 (E Smith, 22.5), 84 (A Sewell, 24.5), 95 (D Hooper-Smith, 29.5), 131 (D Sewell, 46.2), 131 (R Whyte, 46.5)
Bowling; C Smith 16-6-32-3, M Beer 13-0-50-0, J Hodson 9-3-25-3, H Cooke 6-1-17-1, M Grattan 2.5 -1-2-2.
Second Innings J Shields lbw Smith 4
J Horrell lbw Beer 9
B Cant c Fitzgibbon b Smith 2
S Grobler c Grattan b Smith 0
D Drew lbw Grattan 26
E Smith c Smith b Grattan 43
S Conlan not out 14
A Sewell b Grattan 2
D Hooper-Smith b Grattan 0
D Sewell lbw Meyer 7
R Whyte c Wadworth b Meyer 5
Extras (b 2, lb 1, wd 1) 4
TOTAL (wickets 10; 45.1 overs) 116
Fall of wicket: 5 (J Shields, 7.1), 7 (B Cant, 7.5), 15 (S Grobler, 9.1), 15 (J Horrell, 10.2), 86 (E Smith, 28.5), 87 (D Drew, 30.4), 95 (A Sewell, 36.2), 95 (D Hooper-Smith, 36.4), 106 (D Sewell, 43.1), 116 (R Whyte, 45.1)
Bowling; M Beer 8-4-15-1, C Smith 9-2-24-3, J Hodson 5-1-16-0, H Cooke 6-1-10-0, R Prattley 3-1-11-0, M Grattan 10-4-32-4, R Meyer 4.1-1-5-2.
SOUTHLAND First Innings R Duffy lbw Grobler 61
S Wadworth lbw D Sewell 15
R Meyer c Player b Cant 7
S Fitzgibbon lbw J Horrell 15
J Domigan b Horrell 5
R Prattley st Hooper-Smith b Horrell 41
M Grattan lbw J Horrell 0
C Smith c Hooper-Smith b Sewell 11
H Cooke lbw J Horrell 6
M Beer not out 42
J Hodson lbw Sewell 17
Extras (b 1, lb 1, nb 3) 5
TOTAL (wickets 10; 74.5 overs) 225
Fall of Wicket: 40 (S Wadworth, 10.6), 48 (R Meyer, 13.5), 70 (S Fitzgibbon, 21.5), 88 (J Domigan, 29.2), 147 (R Prattley, 44.3), 147 (M Grattan, 44.6), 147 (R Duffy, 45.2), 165 (C Smith, 59.4), 165 (H Cooke, 60.5), 225 (J Hodson, 74.5)
D Sewell 17.5-5-47-3, E Smith 9-1-49-0, B Cant 9-2-25-1, J Horrell 26-8-67-5, S Grobler 11-1-29-1, R Whyte 2-0-6-0.
Extras (b 2, lb 1, wd 1) 4
R Duffy lbw Smith 9
S Wadworth not out 4
R Meyer not out 8
Extras (lb 1) 1
TOTAL (wickets 1; 3.4 overs) 22
Fall of wicket: (R Duffy 14, 3.1)
Bowling: D Sewell 2-0-9-0, E Smith 1.4-0-12-1.
The Southland Times