Auckland have beaten Otago by three wickets in the Provincial A tournament, having chased down a substantial total with one ball to spare.
Needing 182 for victory, Auckland made a great start to their innings and managed to show enough quality down the order to pick up a win in their first round of Twenty20 games.
Auckland decided to take first crack at the Otago batting line-up and had immediate success, dismissing Michael Bracewell first ball of the innings.
Next to go was Hamish Rutherford for 13, but that would be the last of the celebrations for many overs for Auckland.
Ryan Duffy found some form as he played sensibly to make 53 from 48 deliveries. Out there with him was Daryl Broom who smashed an unbeaten 77 from 45 balls.
Auckland were relieved when they finally sent Duffy packing, but their reprieve was a short one as Otago Captain Iain Robertson came out and pummelled the bowling attack.
Robertson smashed an unbeaten 42 from just 17 deliveries to help Otago finish with the substantial total of 181 for three.
Auckland knew that they had to get off to a good start to have any chance and that’s exactly what happened.
It was the Neal Parlane of old as he crunched 77 from 52 deliveries. Alongside him was Tim McIntosh who keeps performing in this tournament as he made a valuable 49.
That set the platform for Auckland and 31 from Dusan Hakaraia got them even closer to their target.
However just when it looked like they were going to get their comfortably, wickets started to tumble.
Needing eight off the last over, Otago picked up wickets off the first two balls to really intensify the situation. Donovan Grobbelar though was not going to let this get away from Auckland as he smashed a six next ball to ease Auckland’s worries and see his side to victory.
Ian Butler did everything he could for the Southerners, but even his figures of three for 21 from four couldn’t see his side home.