The Horowhenua-Kāpiti Bears cricket team is daring to dream, with two games remaining in the Furlong Cup competition.

The team had a real chance of gaining a Hawke cup challenge - their first since 1986 - after recording a first-innings win over Wanganui at Donnelly Park at the weekend.

It left HK third on points, just one point away from their next opponent Manawatū, and four points shy of leaders Hawke's Bay.

HK was fresh from an historic first innings win over Hawke's Bay and was a match for Wanganui, strengthened by the return of Central Stag Ben Smith and the in-form CD A rep Akash Gill.

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Three changes were made to the HK XI as batsmen Keegan MacLachlan, Adam Simonsen and Bailey Te Tomo returned for seamers Liam Pinfold, Daemon Kennett and Caleb O'Connell.

HK captain Andre Halbert won the toss and chose to bat. Openers Adam Simonsen and Dion Sanson started well before Sanson, quickly followed by Matthew Good, were removed by Wanganui's Gill and Kumar.

Simonsen was joined by Chad Law and the pair put on 133 for the 3rd wicket before Simonsen was dismissed for 88 from 186 deliveries. proving he is one of the better batsmen in the province.

Player-coach Law soon followed Simonsen back to the pavilion scoring 78 from 161, a courageous innings given he was in pain and battling a knee injury.

In a regular loss of wickets through the middle overs the team went from 185-3 to 247-9 as Smith showed his class and took 4-18 through the HK middle order.

But an entertaining last wicket partnership from Keegan MacLachlan and Carter Andrews saw HK through to 299, scoring eight boundaries in their 10th wicket stand.

HK went to field with just 18 overs left in the day and Central Stag Ryan McCone made an immediate impact taking the scalp of Sheriff in the first over before trapping captain and key batsmen Dom Lock lbw.

Three quick wickets from Fraser Bartholomew before the close of play had Wanganui reeling at 5-41.

Wanganui rebuilt their innings the next morning as Akash Gill and Matthew Simes cashed in, before Gill removed himself from the crease with a shoulder injury.

McCone came storming in again and removed McIlraith. Andrews then picked up the key wicket of Simes for 45, while Kelsey Fahey took a double wicket maiden in his first over of the season to have Wanganui 137-9.

Smith came out at number 11 for Wanganui, joined by Gill as they tried to pass the follow on target. Both batsmen began swinging from the hip and attacking the HK bowlers.

Momentarily it looked like they might reach their target before Simonsen picked up the wicket of Smith just on lunch to leave Wanganui five runs short of the follow on.

They were sent back in by captain Halbert.

Wanganui knuckled down in their second innings firmly set on batting for the draw. Nearly every player in the HK team was used by captain Halbert to try to find a way to make inroads but no one managed to find a way.

Keegan MacLachlan was impressive and bowled better than his figures of 1-23 suggested, but it was Wanganui opener Sheriff who batted his team to safety with a gutsy 92 from 195 balls, an impressive innings from the CD U17 Captain.