Capital raid on the big smoke | PHOTOSPORT

Heatwave? It's just the Blaze in town


Auckland Hearts lost to Wellington Blaze by 78 runs

Kennards Hire Community Oval, Eden Park, Auckland

4 January 2022


Wellington Blaze bossed another big Hallyburton Johnstone Shield clash to complete a perfect weekend in the city of sails.

Yesterday it was Auckland Hearts captain Lauren Down with the HBJ century. Today in the rematch it was her Wellington Blaze counterpart Maddy Green raising the bat with a knock of 106 off just 94 balls on the scorching summer day.

Heatwave? It was just the Blaze in town, surely.

Green had chosen to bat first and underpinned her team's 277/8 with her third List A one-day century - the former Aucklander's first ton for the capital.

Blaze strung together partnerships around her with almost everyone chiming in as the Hearts toiled for wickets - the first breakthrough arriving in only the 11th over.

Fran Jonas and Amie Hucker each picked up a brace, and spinner Jonas was impressive in her parsimony, conceding just 3.70 per over.

Arlene Kelly and Holly Huddleston (above) kept things tight as well, but a hot start with the ball from Wellington Blaze's attack soon had the hosts hopping on the back foot.

The big wicket of Down was gone at 23/1 after Xara Jetly got one through, then Maneka Singh had the experienced Kelly next over.

Dangerous spinners Melie Kerr and Leigh Kasperek then swooped in for Izzy Gaze and Katie Perkins and the Hearts were officially in trouble at 54/4.

A gritty stand of 98 for the fifth wicket between Huddleston and Saachi Shahri gave them a chance of a comeback.

Huddleston reached 36 while Shahri top-scored with a fighting 53 before Kasperek added them both to her haul for the day.

Kasperek was on fire and carried on to a five-wicket bag: a scorching 5-45, her fifth bag in this format.

The Hearts were left wondering what the Blazes as they were dismissed for 199 in the 48th over: another capital raid on the big smoke.

With Thanks To

Sky Sport Pitch ANZ Ford Mediaworks Dulux KFC
Accor Hotels CCC Dream11 Dynasty Gillette GJ Gardner Hertz Les Mills Export Powerade TAB