Mangonui 124/ 6 beat Kerikeri 117/ 6:
It came down to the last over to decide the winner but Mangonui/ Kaitaia who batted first were eventually overjoyed at snatching revenge and beating their Kerikeri archrivals in this Twenty20 match at Taipa on Sunday.
Man of the match was Kerikeri's Ryan Barker who took three wickets for 12 runs (in his four overs), and also scored 20 runs. Also notable were Mangonui's Jerry Adams with 3 for 20 (off four overs), while Jossy Thomas and Nilish Patel bowled extremely well and maintained a few maiden overs.
With the paddle, Kerikeri ex-pat and talented footballing and cricket exponent James Welch top-scored on 29, and skipper Rob Drummond hit 18 for the visitors; while for Mangonui, Patel top-scored with 23. Taipa stalwart Jim Roberts also enjoyed a knock of 14 and took a couple of good catches on the boundary including a dismissal of Lowell Gundry with a remarkable diving catch.
The match was the offspring of the Cricket in the Park T20 match played at Kerikeri Domain on New Year's Day. Initially intended as a one-off, the Cricket in the Park fixture inspired the match at Taipa on Sunday, which will now be part of the new City vs Country Trophy series contested between Kerikeri and Mangonui.
The next game in the series will be played at Kerikeri High School (on the artificial pitch as the one on Kerikeri Domain didn't quite cut the mustard) on Sunday, February 10, starting at 10am.
The match both offered Mangonui a chance for redemption after being squished in Kerikeri earlier in the month, and also gave impetus for a Far North senior competition featuring more district teams to swing into action next summer. All further evidence cricket was starting to make its return from the abyss it had stumbled into several years ago, noted organiser Peter Barnett, representing the Far North Cricket Association.
"It was an excellent day, cricket's really starting to snowball up here," said Barnett, adding that conditions - overcast and a light southwest breeze - were much more pleasant compared with those experienced at Kerikeri on January 1. As well, the hamburger-style food supplied by a local fast food caravan at Taipa on Sunday received high praise from all who indulged.