Kate Anderson | PHOTOSPORT

Blaze blows chance to qualify top


Round 10

Sunday 18 February 2024

Cello Basin Reserve, Wellington


Canterbury Magicians : points

Wellington Blaze : 0 points


Selected milestones

Sarah Asmussen: 50 List A matches

Missy Banks: career best bowling (previous best 2/5)

Kate Chandler: career best List A score

Frankie Mackay: 200 List A wickets

All Wellington Blaze had to do to ink in the top qualifier spot for the Hallyburton Johnstone Shield Final was win against the team that was dead last on the ladder.

The Magicians had other ideas, as both teams turned up the gas after yesterday's low-scoring hiccups.

Frankie Mackay won the toss for the visitors and opted to bowl, Missy Banks straight into her work with two big early wickets - Jess McFadyen and Rebecca Burns both falling in the seventh over, leaving the Mags 12/2.

Georgia Plimmer and Caitlin King made a good start to a new partnership, King finding the boundary several times before another hiccup in the 12th over, when she was caught off leggie Sarah Asmussen.

Captain Kasperek came and went the next over and the Blaze were in trouble at 43/4.

Surely not another low-scoring thriller at the Basin?

Plimmer and Kate Chandler managed to stay together for a while to add 26 for the fifth wicket but, when Mackay had the dangerous Plimmer caught, it triggered another flurry of wickets.

Blaze was ultimately bowled out in just the 43rd over, for 155, Mackay finishing the job with a class 4/14 off her 8.1 overs (including three maidens) and Banks ending with 3/41.

But for Kate Chandler's career best 59 at six, it could well have been an action replay of the previous day's innings.

The Magicians set out after their target of 156 knowing the simply needed partnerships to have the edge.

It started horribly, Mackay dismissed for a duck by Jetly, and Harriet Graham, opening the innings, battling for her 16 before she fell to Nicole Baird.

But Kate Anderson, coming in at first drop in the second over, would be in for the long haul.

Her top knock of 71 took Canterbury through to the 31st over, by which time the chase was almost ticked off.

Leigh Kasperek finally had her caught at 139/4, but the pressure had long since evaporated, and Nat Cox pumped a pair of sixes off Jetly to make it even breezier to the finish line, the Mags saving their best for last with a six-wicket win over the defending champs with more than 17 overs to spare.

For the Blaze, the lapse had cost them the competition's top qualifying berth - the Otago Sparks meanwhile having beaten the Hearts twices, with two bonus points, to overtake them at the last minute.

The Blaze had qualified for the Final with two rounds to spare, but now they would be heading to Dunedin against a team running hot, to fight for the trophy.






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