Unsettled spring weather has played a major role in the early fortunes of sport as the transition from winter and summer codes continues.
Last week's opening match of the representative cricket season between Riverview Motel Wanganui and Manawatū was abandoned last weekend. The scheduled Furlong Cup clash forced clubs contesting the Coastal Challenge Cup to play a round of Twenty20 matches with no points going toward the competition standings.
Representative cricket will now resume in round one of the Chapple Cup on Friday, November 20, with Wanganui set to play Marlborough.
The Coastal Challenge Cup club side competition resumes with round four this weekend.
Medical Centre Paraparaumu, Burger King Red Star and Whanganui Collegiate School 1st X1 are tied on 10 points, with Paraparaumu slightly ahead on net run rate, Red Star second and WCS a close third.
Wanganui Vet Services Marist veteran Mark Fraser still leads the batting figures, while WCS all-rounder Shaun O'Leary heads the fielding statistics with four catches and one run out assist.
This weekend WCS take on Red Star and Queen Elizabeth Park in Masterton, Kāpiti Old Boys play Marist on the Paraparaumu Domain, Property Brokers Wanganui United play Levin Old Boys in the Tasman Tanning grounds at Victoria Park and Levin United tackle Weraroa on Greytown Memorial Park. Paraparaumu have the bye.
In unpleasant conditions in Palmerston North last weekend, with drizzling rain all day, Castlecliff Club Mustangs convincingly beat Bluesox 17-2 in the Manawatū Premier men's softball league season opener.
Bluesox batted first, scoring two runs with some good hits and base running. Mustangs came out all barrels firing, scoring nine runs.
This featured the return to batting form of Aaron Mahony, who hit a huge home run. Smart pitching by Mustangs' pitcher Danny Green had the Bluesox batters dismissed quickly. Mustangs scored a further eight runs at their second turn at bat.
Hollis brothers Ben, Cameron and Joshua, along with Brian Landon-Lane, Captian Langes, Jeff Yacap and Mahony all batted 1000.
"It was pleasing to see all our players score today, something I don't see often," coach Ron Hollis said.
This weekend Mustangs have a doubleheader, playing two strong teams in Kingswood and the new Panthers team.
"This will be a test to see where we are at," Hollis said.
Meanwhile, on a drying track with several damp spots on key areas at Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park in Taupō last weekend, Whanganui motorcycle aces Jayden Carrick (Suzuki 1000cc) and Tarbon Walker (Kawasaki ZX 600cc) each won legs of the senior clubman series hosted by the Hamilton Motorcycle Club.
Both classes of machines were lumped together in each heat and Carrick easily won race one after an early tussle for the lead with Walker. Walker did well to stay on the pace on his ZX600 surrounded by the more powerful 1000cc superbikes. He did hang on for fourth, however.
By race three, Carrick had crashed and was carted away for observation, leaving Walker to fly the flag for Whanganui.
He led throughout, chased hard by riders on superbikes, but proved too strong in the end. The meeting was part of a series of low key events designed to help teams prepare for the upcoming Suzuki Series next moth followed by the New Zealand Superbike Championships in the New Year.
Athletics take centre stage in Whanganui this weekend with the running of the second of three Regional League meets around the North Island.
The Regional League round two event at Cooks Gardens will attract about 300 athletes from clubs throughout the lower North Island to the iconic track. All event disciplines except pole vault are on the programme, promising a vibrant afternoon of track and field competition.
The field events start at 11am, with the hammer throw the last field event getting under way at 3.10pm.