Pepperell gives boost to North City
Russell Pepperell showed his worth with bat and ball as North City notched their second win in three games in Wellington premier cricket on Saturday.
Pepperell opened the bowling against Wainuiomata on a slow and low Linden Park wicket after the visitors won the toss.
He and Daniel Rose produced a tight opening spell, conceding just a handful of runs and taking one wicket coming from the first eight overs.
Rose, who is still at Tawa College, took 1-24 from his 10 overs, and Pepperell mirrored those figures.
Stu Veitch and Zac Ringrose took three wickets apiece. Wainuiomata reached 200-9 in their 50 overs.
Pepperell then scored 47 in an opening stand of 86 with Duncan Moore to begin the North City chase strongly.
The innings was perfectly paced – skipper Raj Chawla made 46 and Moore finished 82 not out and the target was reached in 39.2 overs.
The result earned North City a bonus point.
Chawla said it was their most complete team performance, especially considering their stars, Wellington reps Michael Pollard and Dane Hutchison, were missing from the North City lineup.
‘‘It was very pleasing,’’ Chawla said. ‘‘ We were confident chasing those runs, but our batting has let us down quite a bit this season.
‘‘Today everything went like we wanted it to. The boys all chipped in with wickets and then we batted very well. We’re getting our act together.’’
It has not been a great season so far for North City. They were flogged in their first two T20 matches, against Onslow and Karori, and were then beaten in one-dayers by Hutt Districts and Collegians. They scored 115, 96, 67 and 109 in those four outings.
But against Naenae on November 9, North City chased down 191, and then made 194 in a losing effort against Taita on November 16.
Saturday’s victory over Wainuiomata was all about confidence and may have helped them turn a corner, Chawla said.
‘‘ We are rebuilding at the moment and we miss Polls [Pollard] and Dane, but we’ve shown what we can do without them.
‘‘ There are a lot of young players like Daniel and Zac and they are learning quickly. There is a lack of experience, but we are building good momentum.’’
North City face a stiff test against high- flying Eastern Suburbs on Saturday.
Top effort: North City’s Russell Pepperell produced a tight spell of bowling in roasting conditions on Saturday.