Was Central Districts Women's Under-21 skipper Hester Nesbitt out yesterday?
The opening batsman from Wanstead was out for 37 runs when Wellington fielder Rebecca Burns supposedly caught her yesterday in Christchurch in the final round of the limited-overs match of the national under-21 women's tournament.
"It was a controversial wicket because the ball had looped up and Hester didn't think the player taking a diving catch at short mid-wicket had caught the ball," CD manager Esther Lanser said last night after their three-wicket loss at the Bert Sutcliffe Oval.
"All the fielders ran up to the player lying on the ground to congratulate her but Hester thought it had hit the ground first," Lanser lamented.
Nevertheless, it's what the first-year university student did next that pretty much sums up what the national tourney is all about.
Regrettably, in almost schoolgirl fashion, Nesbitt walked.
"It's a learning curve because the fielder was unsure if she caught it so Hester should have stood there because then the umpires would have discussed it and given the batsman the benefit of the doubt," Lanser said.
However, all that did not detract from the fact that CD didn't put enough runs on the board after no one occupied the batting crease, including Nesbitt who eventually found some form in Saturday's three-wicket win over Otago at Lincoln.
"Of the top six, no one really put her head down to grind it out on a pretty slow track at times which made it tough going," she said after Wellington won the toss and put CD in for a paltry 89 runs all out with 10.5 overs to spare.
On a variable four-day wicket, Wellington also stuttered before eclipsing the target with 90-7 in just 29.2 overs.
"We bowled pretty well although we had some full tosess and a few short balls but we took all our chances," Lanser said after Hannah Rowe and Sarah Cowan took two wickets each.
Opening bowler Maneka Singh was under utilised, having bowled only four overs for four runs in her first spell but uncharacteristically conceding two wides.
Singh bowled one over in the second spell then withdrew in the belief the cross wind put her at a disadvantage amid a team view that Rowe wasn't strong enough to run into the wind.
"We got the message out there to get Maneka and Hannah on so we're not sure what happened although we can't run messages out every over," Lanser said, adding Bay's Holly Macdonald didn't bowl because she wasn't feeling well.
"We really fought hard and made Wellington work for all their runs so we told the girls to hold their heads up high."
In Saturday's game, CD restricted Otago to 158-9 in 50 overs with left-armer Singh outstanding in taking 3-15 from 10 overs, including two maidens.
CD were guilty of bowling 23 wides although Otago returned the favour with interest (26).
Nesbitt led the way with 53 runs after No 3 Briar Cloake occupied the crease with 18 and Maree Heal chimed in with 17.
Yesterday, all the teams went into battle having lost a game each with four points plus bonus points up for grabs in the one-dayers. From today they play two twenty/20 matches, worth three points plus bonus points, and one more tomorrow to decide the champions.
Auckland and ND join Wellington for the bragging rights after wins yesterday.
Otago yesterday bowled a mind-boggling 56 wides.