AUCKLAND HEARTS defeated the OTAGO SPARKS
by 7 wickets at University of Otago Oval
8 December 2018
Sent in, the Otago Sparks were in for a tough weekend against the rampaging Hearts, one of the two unbeaten sides as the Hallyburton Johnstone Shield reached the fifth of 10 rounds.
Openers Polly Inglis and Olivia Gain started well and put on a half-century stand in a weather-affected match reduced to 34 overs.
However, when the start was broken, things rapidly went south for the hosts. It was a special day for Sparks captain Katey Martin playing her 155th match for her team - beating Canterbury's Chris Harris as the cricketer to have played the most games for a single Major Association team in New Zealand.
But there were no special allowances as the popular veteran was given out for a golden duck.
The Sparks could only muster 137 for seven wickets against the disciplined Hearts attack on a bowler-friendly surface, but as usual the Hearts' line-up made it look easy.
WHITE FERN Anna Peterson exited to the second ball of the innings, but half centuries to both captain Maddy Green and Katie Perkins saw the city slickers reach the modest target in just the 23rd over.
The sole consolation for the Sparks was keeper Martin celebrating her 100th catch with the dismissal of Lauren Down.