Black century underpins strong start

GLENN MCLEAN
Last updated 05:00 27/01/2014
Robert Northcott
ANDY JACKSON/Fairfax NZ
ON TARGET: Robert Northcott picked up his first premier five-wicket bag against New Plymouth Boys' High School.

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Competition leaders New Plymouth Boys' High School got into a strong position on day one of their round four premier match against Hawera United after a maiden century from Cam Black.

Black hit an unbeaten 106 to help his side through to 221 before Hawera ended the day in a bit of trouble at 147 four seven at the school ground.

Despite the green nature of the pitch, Boys' High were in a reasonably comfortable position when they went to lunch at 108 for three off 37 overs.

Douglas Hondo took two early wickets, bowling Matthew Boswell for two and having Rupert Young caught for 12.

Liam Muggeridge looked settled before he was bowled for 25 to leave the school side 65 for three.

Debutant Archie Skipworth went to the break unbeaten on 42 and he brought up his half century shortly after the break before he was out for 51.

Although he played and missed plenty of times outside off stump he grew in confidence and started to play a good array of shots.

Hawera would have felt disappointed not to get more wickets because they generally bowled in the right areas.

The middle session belonged to 17-year-old Black as he dominated the bowling to reach his century off 115 balls, hitting 14 fours and a solitary six in the process.

The elegant right-hander had been batting down the order for the school side this season but took full advantage of an elevation up the order to prove what he was capable of.

Best of the Hawera bowlers was left arm orthodox spinner Robert Northcott who picked up his first five wicket bag in premier cricket, ending the innings with figures of five for 57 off 17.5 overs.

Hawera struggled from the outset of their innings, losing two quick wickets before Matt Pease was trapped in front with the score at 38 for three.

Hondo was then bowled to leave his side at 48 for four heading into the last hour before they lost another three wickets.

Elsewhere, there was triumph and tragedy for Francis Douglas Memorial College as they hosted bottom-placed Woodleigh.

The school side would have been ecstatic to get through to 324 for eight declared after a number of batsmen made solid contributions, including Bailey Wisnewski (72) and Daniel Bernet (37).

There was despair for Michael Blanks, however, after he was run out for 99 attempting to get his first century for the side.

Woodleigh made it through to 47 for two at stumps.

Defending champions New Plymouth Marist United are in a strong position to gain an outright victory after taking an 86-run first innings lead at home against Inglewood.

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Matt Sim top-scored with 64 in Marist United's total of 189. The home side then bowled Inglewood out for just 103, with Ryan Watson, Hayden Birss and GJ Pike each taking three wickets.

Marist United made it through to 43 for two in their second innings.

The remaining match between New Plymouth Old Boys and Stratford was played over two days to allow Old Boys to play in the national one-day club qualifying finals in Palmerston North this weekend.

Batting first, Stratford put up a decent first innings score of 175 before bowling out their hosts for 118, with Ethan Keller taking five for 13.

Things did not go as well in their second innings as Dean Stewart (four for 22) helped Old Boys bowl them out for 139, leaving the home side a target of 197 for an outright win.

They managed that without much fuss, reaching the target for the loss of just two wickets as Jackson Braddock-Pajo made 80 and Kane Robertson remained unbeaten on 83.

- Taranaki Daily News

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