Colin Munro delivered his second influential batting performance of the match to help guide the Auckland Aces to a four-wicket Plunket Shield win over the Otago Volts in Dunedin today.
Coming off his maiden first-class century in Auckland’s first innings of 242, the determined left-hander again fronted with an invaluable 39 scored at close to a run a ball pace before the Aces reached a modest target of 155 to win the match.
Auckland had looked anything but assured as they slipped to a worrying two for none, 28 for four then 55 for five but Munro was unperturbed, striding to the middle at No 7 in the order and grabbing the initiative in tandem with Anaru Kitchen to settle the visitors’ nerves.
Munro did not muck about, finding the boundary on seven occasions before legspinner Aaron Redmond had him caught by substitute fieldsman Mark Craig with Auckland 27 runs short of the target.
Bruce Martin picked up where Munro left off to strike 17 not out off 12 balls, and Kitchen had the satisfaction of being unbeaten on 46 after 137 minutes in the middle.
Auckland’s bowlers, including Munro, had earlier operated well as a unit to roll Otago for 170 in their second innings after the hosts resumed this morning on 77 for four, holding an overall lead of just 61 runs.
Only captain Derek de Boorder caused them any grief as he spent 199 minutes making a determined 57, his second half-century in a low scoring match, before Dean Bartlett trapped him leg before wicket.
All five Aces bowlers had success, Munro’s medium pace rewarding him with two for 20 off nine overs, while Dean Bartlett took three for 54 off 14, Mitchell McClenaghan two for 43 off 22 and Chris Martin two for 43 off 19.