A quick bag set up the match | PHOTOSPORT

ND off to a flier with innings victory

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NORTHERN DISTRICTS beat OTAGO VOLTS by an innings and 32 runs

Seddon Park, Hamilton

20-22 October, 2023



First innings points:

Northern Districts: 8 (maximum achieved)

Otago Volts: 6

Total points this round: Northern Districts 20, Otago Volts 6


Jamal Todd: First-class debut

Luke Georgeson: First-class debut for Otago Volts

Sandeep Patel: Maiden first-class century

Scott Kuggeleijn: 11th first-class five-wicket bag, career best match analysis (9/84)

Otago Volts: Equal lowest First Class score in matches against ND

BJ Watling: Northern Districts Head Coach debut

All images: PHOTOSPORT

The Otago Volts paid dearly for fielding a fresh-look team away against a well-prepared ND as they sunk not only to an innings defeat with more than a day and a half to spare, but to their lowest equal total against Northern Districts since matches between the sides began in the late 1950s.

Nine wickets in the match for ND star Scott Kuggeleijn provided the senior quick's best career analysis at Seddon Park, while a maiden Sandeep Patel century - in just his second appearance - provided the x-factor in the perfect start to the season.

ND bagged all 20 points on offer and it was a top start for their new Head Coach BJ Watling and assistant Daniel Flynn as well, two longtime ND colleagues.


Kuggeleijn's best haul since his 7/45 career best in 2020/21 saw the Hamish Rutherford-less Otago Volts crumble to 267 all out in 83.5 overs, hosts ND 21/1 in reply by stumps on a fast-moving day.

Dean Foxcroft was making his captaincy debut for the team in the longtime captain's absence, and he was in charge of a side missing regular practitioners like Michael Rippon and Michael Rae as well, with the experienced bowlers both having moved to Canterbury.

Foxcroft had new faces Jamal Todd (on first-class debut) and former Wellingtonian and opening batter Luke Georgeson (on Volts debut) in his XI. A prematch injury forced a late change for ND with wicketkeeper Ben Pomare stepping in for injured Tim Seifert after Northern won the toss and bowled.

Like Sandeep Patel, Pomare was playing just his second Plunket Shield fixture, but he was quickly in the action with a sharp runout, and then a brilliant one-handed diving catch to remove Foxcroft as ND reduced the Volts to 104/5 by lunch on the first day of the season.

After Kuggelelijn's 6/60, by stumps ND already held the psychological advantage.


Sandeep Patel, 24-year-old scion of the Manukau Cricket Club, had a day to remember with his maiden first-class century in just his second game. The number four slammed his hundred off 148 balls, in 187 minutes (12x4, 2x6), and kept flying through his work.

He was still there at tea on the second day, by which time Northern had reached a handy 345/6 for a 78-run lead, despite Jacob Duffy hitting his straps first game of the season and finding some testing bounce.

Patel fell just shy of a 150 (with a sore foot to show for it), with 16 boundaries and three sixes in all in his eventual 145.

He'd enjoyed great support from experienced Joe Carter who had smashed his way to an aggressive 94 before a slick runout ended their 193-run stand for the fourth.

Sandeep Patel | MBUTCHER

By stumps, Northern already had the Volts back at the crease after captain Jeet Raval declared at 376/9. And the luckless Volts had already lost two quick wickets as everything continued to go perfectly to plan for the hosts.


The Volts had taken a 109-run deficit which in ordinary circumstances would not have a team overly concerned. But concern escalated rapidly in the morning session of the third day as the southerners completely lost their grip on the match, handing ND an outright.

The top six batsmen were all dismissed for single-figure scores - only debutant Jamal Todd (at seven, with 10 runs) and number nine Ben Lockrose (34) made double digits.

Northern meanwhile wrapped things up without the services of their Test bowler Neil Wagner in the second innings whose hamstring kept hm sidelined.

Kuggeleijn added 3/24 to his first innings six-fa and Brett Hampton, Kristian Clarke and spinner Joe Walker each helped themself to a brace as the Volts stared at a sorry scoreboard, rolled for 77 in a brutal start to the season - their equal lowest outing against ND since 1999/2000 at Gisborne's Harry Barker Reserve. Gone by lunchtime.

Northern Districts now head to Auckland next Saturday (28 October) while the Volts play Canterbury at Hagley Oval.






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