Auckland Aces beat Canterbury by six wickets - bonus point win
Kennards Hire Community Oval
20 February 2022
The Auckland Aces rose to second on The Ford Trophy table as they blew away Canterbury for the second time in three days.
On Friday it was captain Robbie O'Donnell who had produced the match-winning century and this time it was the ever exciting Glenn Phillips blasting an unbeaten 122 off 102 balls to see his side home with another bonus point to boot.
Canterbury captain Cole McConchie had elected to bat on the humid Auckland morning, but Lockie Ferguson (2-25) quickly had two of the top three contemplating theor misfortunes back in the tent, Chad Bowes bowled early and Ken McClure following suit for just nine.
Opener Jack Boyle (29), Leo Carter (58) and McConchie (33) himself were all tasked with a rebuild, patiently picking off balls for a gradual recovery to 153/4.
But the Aces' three-prong spin attack made it difficult to score quickly, Will Somerville (2-20), Adi Ashok and Phillips picking up five wickets between them.
Canterbury, already out of contention for the title they had won last year, managed to bat out their 50 overs nine down to set the Aces a chase of 227.
But once Phillips got in a mood, that was looking light - the first drop taking care of more than half those required runs.
Martin Guptill and George Worker (36) had already laid an opening platform, Guptill racing to 21 off just 14 balls before he edged Henry Shipley after three overs, while Worker gave Phillips his early support before falling to a tight runout from the Canterbury captain's deadly arm.
The pair had belted some sixes together but it was Phillips's day as the exciting strokemaker went on, finishing the job with Ben Horne in just the 37th over.
The two wins were important victories for the hosts who now need just one more win to claim the last available spot in The Ford Trophy Final against the Central Stags.
They have both their remaining regular season rounds at home this week (behind closed gates), playing the Otago Volts on Tuesday in the Ross Dykes Memorial match and get a rematch with the unbeaten Stags on Thursday - the last game before the Grand Final and a potential dress rehearsal.