Round One • 24 November 2017
Central Hinds v Wellington Blaze at Donnelly Park, Levin
Monique Rees, Kate Stiven, Kate Sims (Central Hinds) and Beth Molony all made their T20 debuts
New captain, fresh faces, good preseason form and a home game to launch 2017/18, but it was tough season opener for the Central Hinds after they were sent in by Wellington Blaze captain Liz Perry and her slick crew.
The Hinds lost three quick wickets after Jess Watkin was run out in the second over, Melissa Hansen and former Netherlands, Wellington Blaze and Northern Spirit cap Kerry Tomlinson (making her first reappearance for the Hinds since 2012) both quickly joining her back in the hutch, all having fallen for single figures.
From a wobbly 13/3, the Hinds needed a quick recovery, rookie captain Anlo van Deventer and the Hinds’ sole WHITE FERN Hannah Rowe combining to try to not just to steady the ship, but get solid runs on the board, and they did just that in a 28-run stand for the fourth wicket.
However, just as they were gaining traction the Blaze burned the Hinds again, removing another three quick wickets, including both Rowe and van Deventer, mid-innings to push the Hinds to 47 for six.
Jess Kerr then put herself on a T20 hat-trick with the wickets of Mikaela Greig and Rosemary Mair and, while it was unconverted, she would walk off with an impressive 4-13 off her four overs; impressive as the devastating haul included her maiden T20 wicket for the Blaze in just her fifth T20 appearance for the side (previous best bowling 0-7).
Bowled out with almost three overs unutilised, the Hinds were in for a tall order containing the experienced Blaze line-up to 64, particularl;y given the visitors were headlined at the top by WHITE FERNS hard-hitter Rachel Priest who bashed a quick 29 off just 20 balls in a 57-run stand for the first wicket with Lucy Doolan.
Doolan was run out by Tomlinson for a run-a-ball 26 shortly after Priest’s dismissal in the seventh over, but the writing was on the wall in capital letters by then and the Blaze cantered to a brutal eight-wicket victory with almost 12 overs in hand.
The two teams now meet in Rounds One and Two of the Halleyburton Johnstone Shield (One-Day) at the same venue over the weekend; entry to all women’s domestic cricket is free.