The Otago Volts rolled the Auckland Aces for 333 to complete a 24 run win at University Oval in Dunedin.
Starting the day on 170 the Volts blazed a quick 38 off five overs before declaring and leaving the Aces a target of 358 to win. Greg Todd was the aggressor hitting a rapid 66 of 47 deliveries.
The run chase was going smoothly for the Aces as Jeet Raval and Tim McIntosh put on a 149 run opening stand but when Raval departed for 58 and McIntosh for 89 on the same score the wheels fell of with the visitors.
Richard Jones (33), Andrew de Boorder (30), Aranu Kitchen (35) and Colin de Grandhomme (39) got starts but spinner Nick Beard was too good, picking up career best figures of six for 107 to engineer the win for Otago.
Strike bowler Neal Wagner chipped in with three for 76 including the valuable wicket of Raval.
The win sees the Volts jump into second spot on the points table with three rounds to play but still ten points adrift of competition leader the Northern Knights. Last years winners the Auckland Aces are out of the running with only eight points on the board.
Day 3: Otago Volts lead by 319 runs with 8 wickets in hand
The Auckland Aces took their score through to 238 for seven off 63 overs before a declaration came with them still 149 runs shy of Otago’s first innings total.
Opener Tim McIntosh continued his rich vein of from, hitting 81 with Reece Young next best with 80.
The Volts second innings is 30 overs old and has netted 170 runs with Craig Cumming backing up his first innings century with 54 runs today.
Fellow opener Leighton Morgan made a useful contribution of 48 with Greg Todd unbeaten on 42 with the home side losing just two wictets.
With both teams needing points to threaten top spot in the competition expect the Volts to declare early to force a result.
Day 2: Auckland Aces trail by 359 runs with 7 wickets in hand
A superb half century from Sam Wells has helped the Otago Volts through to 387 in the first innings with the strike bowlers reducing the Auckland Aces to 28 for three on a rain affected second day.
Wells, who started the day on 56 not out, hit 13 boundaries before falling on 86 to back up captain Craig Cummings century on day one.
The tail wagged for the home side with their last three batsmen contributing 73 with Antony Bullick the best of the three with 42.
Wickets were shared among the Auckland bowlers with Lance Shaw, Michael Bates, Gareth Shaw, Colin de Grandhomme and Tarun Nethula picking up two each.
Auckland’s first innings is off to a rocky start with opener Jeet Raval falling for 12 before Richard Jones and Lance Shaw departed without scoring.
In form batsmen Tim McIntosh is unbeaten on 12 and will resume tomorrow with Reece Young who is yet to score.
Day 1: Otago Volts 274/5 - first innings
Otago captain Craig Cumming hit his 17th First Class ton to give his team the ascendancy at the end of the first day in their Plunket Shield match against the Auckland Aces at University Oval in Dunedin.
Cumming’s raised his bat half way through the second session but was nicked out soon after to finish on 102. It is Cumming’s 15th triple figure score for Otago, moving the prolific batsmen to second on Otago’s all time list, two behind Burt Sutcliffe's long standing record.
Fellow opener Aaron Redmond was unlucky, suffering a leg injury and retiring hurt on 12. The injury is yet to be assessed with a scan required to determine the extent of the damage.
The rest of the top order found it tough to score with a series of low and slow totals highlighted by Leighton Morgan’s 29 off 136 deliveries.
They found some momentum late in the day with an unbeaten sixth wicket partnership of 65 between Sam Wells (56*) and Derek de Boorder (18*).
The pair will resume tomorrow with the score on 274 for five.
Seamer Gareth Shaw and spinner Tarun Nethula picked up two wicket each with new ball bowler Michael Bates chipped in with one.