More to Cornwalls than name

By ANENDRA SINGH sports editor

Riverbend Camp Cricket

THEY are inarguably two of the top cricket clubs in the country - Cornwall (Hastings) and Cornwall (Auckland).

They have a lot in common, too, in the tale of the tape apart from sharing the same name.

For argument's sake, when it comes to the aesthetic values, the Hastings club is equally picturesque as the one in the Big Smoke although, like cellared wine barrels, the Auckland venue has the edge.

"Cornwall Auckland is a beautiful ground next to a hospital but it has an old-fashioned pavilion so they have more tradition than us because they are an older club," said Cornwall Hastings director of cricket David Black after the club's Year 8 team locked horns with their Auckland counterparts last week in the annual Riverbend Cricket Camp here.

Auckland, which boasts ex-Black Caps Martin Crowe and Mark Greatbatch as their members, is the biggest club in the country pertaining to teams.

"Mark Greatbatch played for them and then for us and he's only ever played for the Cornwall clubs," said Black of Greatbatch, of Havelock North, who briefly became the New Zealand coach pre-John Buchanan era and whose son, Charley, is in the year 8 team but isn't playing because they are on holiday.

However, Hastings is proud to claim they have matched their namesakes in the Have A Go programme for 6- to 8-year-olds of 100 participants each.

"We're really chuffed with that because we're a far smaller club when you compare the regions and population but our nurseries are the same," Black said as the visitors are in their second mecca to the age-group camp hosting 92 teams this summer from mostly the North Island.

Hastings club teams have yet to lose to their Auckland opposition.

Last week, Cornwall Hastings Year 8s crushed Auckland Year 8s by eight wickets. Regardless of the defeat, the Aucklanders were overwhelmed their hosts rolled out the carpet for them at "The Lords" the No 1 wicket in front of the club pavilion.

The visitors said accommodating any such thoughts, let alone considering a game, were out of the question in Auckland.

Last summer, the Cornwall Under-14 girls' team beat Auckland at Cornwall Park.

However, in the summer of 2001-02 the Hastings Premier men's team, with Paul Unwin as skipper, lost away at the Aucklanders' venue during the New Zealand Club Championship.

"We beat East Shirley [Auckland side] and lost all the other games but, oddly enough, East Shirley went on to win the title," Black said.

Another thing the clubs have in common is a sponsor, Winstone Wallboards, a Fletcher company.

Black, who has worked for Bath Cricket Club in England in the northern summer, has made a few trips north to brainstorm with Auckland chief executive Adrian Dale, a former English county player.

"I've sat down to chew fat with him on running the club a few times," Black said.

Year 8 (unless stated otherwise) results:

Jan 6: Cornwall Hastings 153 all out (R. Fendall 49, B. Stowe 24, A. Webster 3-24) lose to Upper Hutt 154-5 (A. Webster 45, T. McNatty 2-27) by 5 wkts.

Jan 7: Rotorua 71-9 (T. McNatty 2-3, C. Tait 2-8) bt Cornwall Hastings 62 all out (D. Morgan 3-3, K. Burlace 14) by 9 runs.

Taranaki 115 all out (S. Poles Smith 52*, C. Tait 2-22) bt Cornwall Hastings 105-9 (B. Stowe 24, G. Cranswick 24) by 10 runs.

Cornwall Hastings Yr 10 166 all out (C. Dresser 35, B. Green 34) lost to Wellington Combined 167-8 (B. Story 2-23) by 2 wkts.

Jan 8: Johnsonville 213 all out (N. Pile 61, R. Edgecombe 50, C. Tait 5-33) bt Cornwall Hastings 200-9 (L. McLeod 44, K. Burlace 23) by 13 runs.

Jan 9: Cornwall Auckland 100 all out (K. Sethi 47, H. Gill 3-8, T. Alderson 3-9) lost to Cornwall Hastings (R. Fendall 33, G. Cranswick 31) by 8 wickets

Cornwall Hastings Yr 10 177 all out (C. Dresser 71, B. Green 26) bt Grafton Yr 10 (C. McLeod 4-9, B. Story 2-14) by 96 runs.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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