Auckland Aces 184-5 in 20 overs (Craig Cachopa 73, Daniel Bell-Drummond 30) beat Otago Volts 180-8 in 20 overs (Hamish Rutherford 37, Ben Raine 33) by four runs at Eden Park Outer Oval, Auckland.
In a match decided on the final ball, the Aces got home thanks to Craig Cachopa's blistering 73 runs from 38 balls, backed up by some fine catching and aggressive bowling from his team. The Aces have now won two on the bounce despite losing their white ball BLACKCAPS, and are now on their own in third place.
English import Daniel Bell-Drummond started off extremely positively, striking some nice drives to introduce himself to the Auckland fans until he was trapped in front by a Christi Viljoen in-swinger for 30 runs in the seventh over.
Glenn Phillips chipped in with 16 and Mark Chapman made a steady 29, but it was Craig Cachopa who was the mover and shaker of the innings - he hit 73 from just 38 balls including five fours, punishing anything short or wide, and sending it into the crowd.
The run rate continued to climb the deeper the innings went, with Robbie O'Donnell joining Cachopa to play a supporting role and help get the Aces through to an imposing 184-5.
The Volts lost Josh Tasman-Jones in the first over to a superb diving catch from Donovan Grobbelaar, and regular wickets after that. Plenty of players got starts but didn't kick on in the face of a fired up Auckland attack.
The Volts were able to keep within shouting distance and needed 12 an over from seven overs out - and Brad Wilson and Ben Raine were prepared to chase it down, striking some huge sixes onto the West Stand concourse and down the ground over the fence.
They needed 17 from the last over, to be bowled by Mitch McClenaghan. Raine and Nathan Smith were able to get boundaries away and scamper through for singles to leave them needing a six from the last to win it, but were unable to get it over the rope, to hand the hosts the win by four runs.