SPLIT ROUND • 2022/23
ROUND 8 for Central Stags
ROUND 7 for Northern Districts
CENTRAL STAGS beat ND by 6 wickets
Bonus point victory
Seddon Park, Hamilton
17 January 2023
List A debut: Angus Schaw
Henry Cooper: Second List A century
Brett Randell: Second List A five-wicket bag (first for Central Stags)
Brad Schmulian: List A career best score (93)
Ben Smith: third List A century, 2000 List A runs
All images | PHOTOSPORT
The Central Stags have snatched back The Ford Trophy lead this evening after a double century opening stand between Ben Smith and Brad Schmulian made light work of a 275 run chase at a sweltering Seddon Park.
The pair put on 252 runs for the first wicket, bringing the finish line into sight before Smith tried to ramp Northern Districts once too often and was finally dismissed, after 37 overs, for 145 off 119 balls.
That's the eighth highest knock in Central Stags history, and just shy of the Whanganui batsman's career best unbeaten 149* three years ago in Nelson.
Brad Schmulian provided the support with another Ford Trophy career best innings this season, reaching 93 off 105 balls as the visitors responded to Northern Districts' total of 274/9.
The home team's highlight was a second one-day century to Henry Cooper after having been sent in by Stags captain Dane Cleaver: Cooper providing a polished 145 off 119 balls.
Brett Randell meanwhile claimed just his second career one-day bag for the Stags, against his old team. Randell's 5-39 was the first five-for for the classic paceman since his transfer to Central last year, and saw him overtake injured teammate Seth Rance as the competition's leading wicket-taker nationally with 16 wickets at 13.31.
That translates into Randell's best one-day season yet, the Stags going on to tick off their six-wicket victory with 10.2 overs to spare for their fourth bonus point this season - taking them to an overall three-point lead over Canterbury.
A tough day for ND | PHOTOSPORT
Canterbury will have a chance to reclaim the oscillating lead in the next Ford Trophy match tomorrow when they play the Otago Volts in Dunedin from 11am.