FMG Northern batsman Nick Hammond made history on Saturday with a mammoth score of 184 against Duracrete Products City at Cobham Oval.
The 22-year-old English import, who arrived in New Zealand in October last year, reached the total late on the first day of his side's premier cricket two-day fixture against home side City.
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In beating his previously highest score of 180, Hammond also notched the highest total in Northland's two-day premier competition format in the last five years, according to Northland Cricket competitions manager Neal Parlane.
Hammond's total, in addition to his teammate Sam Webb's score of 84, saw the young team declare on 344/8 with about an hour left to play. Young City leg-spinner Ryan Krige stood head and shoulders above the rest of his team's bowlers with a five-wicket bag.
In their batting innings, the home side lost two wickets for just 39 runs before play ended on Saturday. Returning on Sunday, City were dismissed for 201 with Northern's Axel Shepherd and Webb picking up three wickets apiece.
Batting again, the home side were able to survive Northern's bowlers, ending the game on 222/2 in a draw and giving points to Northern for the first innings lead.
"It was just one of those days where our plans for batting all just slotted into place really nicely," Hammond said.
The opening batsman was a regular fixture for the Worcestershire second Xl in England, comparable to a Northern Districts A player. After three years of university, Hammond wanted to increase his game experience over England's winter and was put in touch with Northland Cricket.
Since his arrival, Hammond had showed his resilience at the top of the batting order, compiling his innings with patience and measure. Hammond's efforts were rewarded by three appearances for Northland's senior men's team.
Hammond started slowly on Saturday, surviving an early onslaught from City's bowlers which saw Northern dangling at 125/4.
However, that brought left-hand batsman Webb to the middle and the pair put on 194 runs for the fifth wicket.
"We compliment each other pretty well, [Webb] is free-flowing and I just knock it round and it was good fun," Hammond said.
While he admitted the double-hundred landmark was in his sights late on Saturday, Hammond said he drew the most satisfaction from spending long periods out in the middle.
"I was obviously really happy but I was aiming to do that kind of thing here because my aim is to play for Worcestershire and score big hundreds like that."
Northern player/coach Harry Darkins said he was glad to have Hammond's experience in a team which primarily consisted of high school players or recent school leavers.
"I know Nick is still young but he's played a lot of cricket and he's got an older head on his shoulders, which I think compliments our young boys really well."
In another game of the round, Kaipara Flats took home first innings points in their draw with Westech Automotive Maungakaramea on Saturday at the Bourne Dean Domain.
Amassing 286/6 in their first innings thanks to a Byron Jollivet century, Kaipara dismissed the visitors for 259 with bowler Liam Jones taking five wickets. Batting again, the home side reached 161/8 before play ended.