Manukau have hackles up
Manukau is out to pinch cricket’s W.H.Taylor Shield from under the noses of Pukekohe-Metro.
They will defending champions head into the final round of the two day champion starting on Saturday four behind the competition leaders and have the easier draw.
They face tailenders United at their War Memorial Park home ground while Pukekohe-Metro are at home to a much tougher Karaka at Bledisloe Park.
Manukau need an an outright to keep the heat on the competition front runners. In that case PukekoheMetro will be forced to beat Karaka outright. A first innings win won’t be enough.
Manukau captain Ashwyn Herwels said his players are aware of the stakes and they will be playing a strategic game.
‘‘We have to pretty much win by an outright. Anything less won’t do. Ideally, we’d like to bat just once...We must be patient and measured in our approach.
‘‘Our batsmen need to value their wickets and build their innings and our bowlers must be accurate with their line and length.’’
Herwels said the absence of representative cricket makes for a mouth watering finale because Manukau, Pukekohe-Metro and thirdranked Karaka will have their best players available.
Pukekohe-Metro spokesman Corey Hunter said nothing less than an outright will do for his team.
‘‘We need to score more than 200 runs and we can’t take too long doing it because our bowlers need time to bowl them out twice for us to stand a chance.’’
Manukau, PukekoheMetro and Karaka all finished with outrights last weekend.
Elsewhere, Weymouth beat United by 16 runs to win the association’s eight aside T20 league at the Opaheke Reserve last Saturday.
Weymouth made 199-4 off their 20 overs. United made 183-7 off 19.2 overs in reply.
And Counties Manukau wrapped up their Fergus Hickey Rosebowl campaign with an outright loss to Bay of Plenty in Tauranga last weekend.