Mark Chapman. PHOTOSPORT

Maiden first-class ton for Mark Chapman


AUCKLAND ACES defeated OTAGO VOLTS by an innings and 97 runs

Eden Park Outer Oval, Auckland

21-23 February 2019


First innings bonus points

Bowling: Otago Volts 4 (maximum achieved), Auckland Aces 4 (maximum achieved)

Batting: Auckland Aces 3, Otago Volts 0


An innings victory to the Auckland Aces over the Otago Volts, and a rare loss inflicted on the Central Stags in Canterbury, saw the Aucklanders overtake defending champions the Stags at the top of New Zealand's first-class leaderboard.
The Volts had been on the back foot in Auckland after having been forced to follow on at Eden Park Outer Oval, Matt McEwan claiming his sixth first-class career five-wicket bag (5-23). It was his third bag for the Aces as he helped his side roll the Southerners for just 80 in the second innings to seal victory by an innings and 97 runs, with a day to spare.
McEwan (above, PHOTOSPORT) was supported by a career best 3-17 for Jamie Brown off just 4.3 overs, the outright giving the Aces a slender, two-point lead with three rounds to go in the $60,000 championship and the heat only going up on all chasing teams.
As if an innings victory, a new number one spot, a maiden century (Mark Chapman) and five-wicket bag (McEwan) wasn't enough to celebrate, the Aucklanders were also toasting young left-armer Ben Lister who took a maiden hat-trick to help bring a swift close to the Otago Volts' first innings that had started so promisingly. It was the 42nd instance of a hat-trick in New Zealand first-class cricket, emulating McEwan's feat a season earlier.


Resuming on 317 for seven, the Aces needed to reach 350 in quick time to achieve maximum batting points and with centurion Mark Chapman still there, they had a good chance. However, wickets tumbled for the Volts and the Aces' innings ended on 337, Matt Bacon finishing with 4-78 when he finally got Chapman caught on 104, the last wicket to fall.

Weather was coming, but initially the Volts' batsmen made hay while the sun shone. Although Cam Hawkins shouldered arms to Matt McEwan and became an early breakthrough, opener Hamish Rutherford raced off the mark, making 50 before lunch.

The second session was delayed by a lunchtime shower and while play eventually got back underway, it was a gloomy afternoon... especially for Volts fans. Sean Solia dismissed Rutherford on 54 after he played all around the ball and lost his off-stump. The batsman was furious with himself as he walked off, a great start wasted.

Four overs later Solia had his second, Josh Tasman-Jones out for 42 after he failed to clear Ben Lister at fine leg. Both set batsmen gone and the Aces now with their tails up.

As they kept chipping through the wickets, the Auckland field came in close and the pressure was on: 147/5. At the stroke of tea, the rain strengthened. Players went off, covers went on, and didn’t ease off for the rest of the afternoon.


Glenn Phillips' 60 helped the Aces stabilise their innings. PHOTOSPORT

Mark Chapman will resume day two tomorrow unbeaten on 101* after reaching his maiden first-class century at his home ground of Eden Park Outer Oval this afternoon.

Better known for his fast-scoring antics against the white ball, Chapman, 24, achieved his first red-ball hundred off just 134 balls, including 18 boundaries, as the number six manoeuvred his side to 314 for seven by stumps.

The day had started much less happily for the hosts after the early loss of both BLACKCAPS Test opener Jeet Raval and first drop Sean Solia.

Left-armer Tommy Clout (above, PHOTOSPORT), who arrived in Otago from Bay of Plenty last year, opened the bowling on Otago Volts debut and had to wait until only his third over to claim Solia as his maiden first-class wicket.

Tommy Clout struck early in his first-class debut for the Otago Volts. PHOTOSPORT

Clout would pick up another in Ben Horne in the final session while Matt Bacon finished the day with 3-73, but it was Chapman’s afternoon as he became the first from his side to capitalise on a good start.

Opening batsman Graeme Beghin had fallen just three runs short of a half century, Glenn Phillips had been trapped on 60 while Robbie O’Donnell was left stunned on 45 having jammed out a Matt Bacon yorker only to be caught by Shawn Hicks who scooped up a low catch from slip.

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