The Napier Technical Old Boys are the best premier men's cricket team in New Zealand.
"Winning six championships in a row was really important to us but this would probably eclipse that, to be honest," the Big Barrel-sponsored NTOB coach, Dale Smidt, said last night.
"We're the best club in the country so say no more, really," Smidt said.
The club rewrote a 140-year-old history last month in becoming the first side in the province's top grade to eclipse the five-on-the-trot feat that United Cricket Club (Napier) established from 1894-95 to 1898-99. The Hastings Cricket Club had also matched United's record at the start of the World War I in 1914-15 to 1918-19, since the competition began in 1882-83, although records were kept only since 1883-84.
Smidt didn't want to come across arrogant but when Onslow won the toss and elected to bat the Texans rubbed their hands with glee in the 23-over affair due to inclement weather delaying the start to about 12.20pm at Cornwall Park, Auckland.
"I tell you what, at 8 o'clock this morning you would have thought that we'll finish second on net run rate. The ground staff did an amazing job and suddenly the sun came out and we were into it," he said with a chuckle, simply relieved to have played on a good batting wicket.
The Liam Rukuwai-captained champions bowled out of their skins, mindful that if they got the prized scalp of first-class batsman, Malcolm Nofal, a former South African domestic cricketer, they were going to be in good stead.
NTOB did, dismissing Nofal for three runs on the way to skittling the Wellingtonians for 108 runs with a ball to spare after only three batsmen got to the 20-run mark.
"They just kept coming and going after that. Christian [Leopard] was outstanding with the ball," he said of the CD Stag who claimed 3-8 from five overs, including a maiden.
Stevie Smidt and Indika Senarathne chipped in with two wickets each while Rukuwai, Jayden Lennox and Robbie Brigham took one each.
Coach Smidt said NTOB players fielded "exceptionally well".
Leopard also stepped up with the bat as an opener, top scoring with an unbeaten 60 from 55 balls with former Black Cap Jesse Ryder seeing the game off seven not out after Matt Edmondson added a crisp 28 from 27 balls.
"We didn't have too many dramas chasing 109 but we have a pretty happy group of players, let me assure you that. We've only had a couple of beers so for some it hasn't really sunk in yet."
NTOB is the only club to have won the national bragging rights. The only other time they won was in 2003 when HBCA chief executive Craig Findlay was a player.
"It's a hard thing to win," said Smidt. "It's been a bloody long week for us. I don't know how many hours we spent in the motel looking out of the window when it's been raining."
He described it as "absolutely horrendous, to be honest".
"The gods have smiled on us today, saying you've got four hours and the sun came out so we got the job done."
Having dusted the final ion good light, they had watched the other two games carry on
as darkness fell.
"We were just rapt that we got out there. I just thought, 'If we don't play we're going to finish second so here's our little chance'," said Smidt as NTOB also avenged their one-wicket loss to Onslow CC during the annual Kilbirnie Sports Twenty20 tourney in Napier last October.