The Central Districts side and their Unreal Grass Wicket Wanganui allrounder Akhil Kumar came up short in their quest for the National Under 19 title after a 10-wicket hammering from Auckland at Lincoln University today.
Both teams were unbeaten coming into their last 50-over round robin game, Auckland holding a slight two point advantage on bonuses, meaning the title would be decided between the two of them.
Central Districts were dismissed for an inadequate 201 after 48 overs, with Kumar promoted up to No 3 in the order but dismissed for only 2.
In reply, Auckland's openers Bevon Jacobs (112 not out) and Simon Keene (86 not out) went coast-to-coast to wrap up the run chase in just the 25th over, striking 20 boundaries and nine sixes between them.
Central Districts tried eight bowlers and they all copped a bit of stick, with Kumar conceeding 19 runs off his two overs.
The tournament had been going well up until that point, as Central Districts completed a narrow seven run win over Northern Districts U19 on Friday.
Their bowlers held Northern Districts to 265-7 at the end of their 50 overs in their chase to reach 272, where Kumar had scored 27.
Kumar (1-37 off six overs) got a prize early wicket when he had ND's captain and New Zealand U19 representative Ollie White caught in the first over.
Central Districts kept the momentum going on Sunday with a 54-run win over Canterbury.
Although Kumar was dismissed for 2 coming in at No 5, Central Districts were well-anchored by Finn Raxworthy, who scored a magnificent 142 from 118 balls, which helped his team to a daunting 310 before again losing their final wicket off the last ball.
Canterbury were then bowled out for 256 in the 47th over, with Kumar getting another top order wicket in his expensive 1-33 from four overs.
Play will continue with Twenty20 matches on Wednesday and Thursday, with Central Districts playing Canterbury and Northern Districts respectively.