Normally you would expect any bowler in any cricket game who has clean bowled four batsmen with consecutive balls to be shouting it from the rooftops.
But that wasn't the case for Greytown paceman Seth Rance when he managed the feat in an Umpire's Cup match against Wairarapa College on Sunday.
Using the game at Wairarapa College to ready himself for a return to the Central Stags side for their Plunket Shield fixture against the Wellington Firebirds, which starts in Nelson on Friday, the focus for Rance was on bowling full and straight rather than with any real hostility.
He did not concede a run while claiming the one wicket in his first four overs and then after bowling another "dot" ball at the start of his fifth over his next four deliveries all crashed into the stumps, giving him his first hat-trick. One ball later and Rance's stint at the bowling crease was over, leaving him with the hugely impressive five wickets for no runs.
However, Rance was hardly in celebratory mode, saying that while pleased with his accuracy there was nothing special about how his wickets were obtained.
"It was a bit embarrassing really, there was a little bit of swing but not so much to make it tricky for the batsmen. In reality I just put the ball up there and they kept missing it."
His effort did, however, complete a memorable few days, as earlier in the week he became a father when wife Suzannah delivered their baby boy, Lachie. This happy occasion prompted Rance to make himself unavailable for the Central Stags Plunket Shield match with Otago which ended in a draw on Sunday. He had also missed an earlier game through a slight groin injury.
Not surprisingly the Rance bowling performance ensured Greytown coasted to a comfortable win over Wairarapa College in a game reduced to 35 overs by inclement weather. The Southerners batted first and the highlight of their 194 was the unbeaten 117 by Robbie Speers. He came in at the loss of the first wicket in the third over and scored at better than a run a ball. All told he faced 100 deliveries.
The fact Speers got to his century was due in large part to the support given him by Josh Aeriell having his first game for Greytown at senior level. He made just the three runs but faced 32 balls. Bowling for Wairarapa College, Brad Griffiths took 3-32 from seven overs. The students were then all out for 72 of which Lucien Burt made 18. Rance was clearly the mainstay of the Greytown attack but Brian James also did well, chiming in with 3-15 from his five overs.
In the other Umpire's Cup match played on Sunday Lansdowne beat Rathkeale College in a match reduced to 20 overs by 19 runs. Lansdowne batted first and reached 108, thanks in the main to Stefan Hook-Sporry's 33 from 29 balls and Alex Treseder's 20 from 27 balls. Bowling for Rathkeale, Louis Garnett took 3-18 from 4.5 overs. Rathkeale then made 89-5 with Charlie Morrison making 29 off 41 balls. They lost star batsmen Liam Burling when he was taken to hospital after being struck in the groin area by a ball flying off the inside edge of his bat. The best of the Lansdowne bowlers was Sanjay Patel, who claimed 2-21 off his two overs.
Liam Burling had been a major contributor for Rathkeale the day before when they tied with Wairarapa College. He made 45 from 54 balls when Rathkeale reached 152. Bowling for Wairarapa Jacob Harp took 3-38 off 7.5 overs, Hugo Wakeling 3-23 off 10 overs and Lucien Burt 2-28 off eight overs. Wairarapa also lost their last wicket at 152 when an lbw appeal was upheld. Brad Griffiths top scored with 39 from 55 balls. Sean Kelly (3-26 off 6.5 overs), Ethan Childs (2-12 off six overs) and Kelsey Fahey (2-32 off eight overs), all among the wickets for Rathkeale.
Umpire's Cup points: Greytown 14, Lansdowne 4, Rathkeale and Wairarapa College 2, Red Star 0.