The Ray White Wanganui Under-17 side has a shot at the finals of the Central Districts age group tournament in Napier this week after ripping Marlborough apart on Wednesday.

The tournament is designed as a vehicle for players to put themselves into contention to make the Central Districts U17 team to represent the province at the nationals in Christchurch in January.

Wanganui is the smallest of the Central region centres, so it was a coup for them to beat Manawatu by eight wickets at Nelson Park on Monday, Hawkes Bay by five wickets on Tuesday and Marlborough yesterday to put themselves into the finals.

Wanganui went about the demolition of Marlborough in clinical fashion from the outset after winning the toss and electing to bowl.


Shaun O'Leary (2/5 off 5 overs), Joel Clark (2/4 off 7) and Akhil Kumar 2/7 off 4) had the Marlborough batters on the back foot throughout the first innings limiting them to a paltry 68 runs and sending them all home in the 29th over.

Chasing 69 for victory, Levi Woolston went for just two runs and Clark five, but then in stepped Kumar who smashed a quick 27 off 32 balls,leaving the winning runs to Sam Sherriff (21), Harry Godfrey (5) and extras (9) to claim the match 69/3 in the 18th over.

Wanganui won its pool to make the final today against a side determined by results of matches that went into the early evening Wednesday.

In earlier matches, Kumar top scored for Wanganui against Manawatu with 67 not out, while Sherriff finished on 34 not out. Clark chimed in with 24 and Woolston 19. Best of the bowlers were Hadleigh O'Leary and Kumar with three wickets each.

Kumar was at it again against Hawkes Bay top scoring with 87 while Sherriff kicked in with 42. O'Leary's 3/45 off 10 overs and Sherriff's 2/45 off 10 made them the best of the bowlers.