Wellington Firebirds lost to Auckland Aces by six wickets
Cello Basin Reserve, Wellington
1 January 2022
With cracking tons each, the exciting new combination of Mark Chapman and George Worker smashed an Auckland Aces record for the second wicket in the first Ford Trophy one-dayer of 2022.
Their sublime 237-run stand in a well managed chase on a hot Wellington New Year's Day was also a new List A record partnership for the Auckland Aces against the Wellington Firebirds for all wickets - with left-hand veteran Worker on Aces debut after his previous appearances in The Ford Trophy for the Central Stags (81 matches) and Canterbury (26 matches).
Worker's 132 off 128 balls was his 15th one-day century overall and first in the blue, while Chapman's 105 off 113 was his sixth List A ton.
The pair eclipsed the previous Aces second-wicket record of 235 held by Martin Guptill and Glenn Phillips since November 2019 and came close to the overall all wickets Auckland record of 242, set by Richard Jones and Rob Nicol for the third wicket in 2007/08.
They ensured that the Aces headed into the last 10 overs of a chase of 308 needing just a run a ball, with plenty of wickets in hand to get the job done for a six-wicket win, with two balls to spare - even a late runout in the last over unable to stop Auckland making a statement in their first one-dayer of the season.
Earlier, the Wellington Firebirds had won the toss and batted, putting up a good total of 307/9 after runs at the top from Finn Allen (86 off 55) and Luke Georgeson (56) in a century stand for the first wicket.
Run machine Troy Johnson continued his good form with 84 at four, but regular wickets through the rest of the order cost the Firebirds the abiity to escalate and, ultimately, enough runs on the board.
The Aces' Danru Ferns picked up 3-68, including two in a frantic last over than also included a runout.