Former Cantabs torment old side
The grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
For Hamish Bennett and Logan van Beek, however, it literally and metaphorically is.
The former Canterbury speedsters made the move to Wellington one season after the other, and combined to tear their old team apart on Wednesday at the Basin Reserve, continuing the theme of the 2017-18 Plunket Shield season.
With the New Zealand A squad named this week for a tour match against the West Indies, Bennett could count himself unlucky not to be included with Adam Milne, Lockie Ferguson and Scott Kuggeleijn preferred.
Bennett took 5-14 from 10.5 overs, while van Beek snared 3-33 from 13, as Canterbury folded for just 118 on a green wicket.
They lead the Plunket Shield wickettaking table with 22 and 21 respectively, at averages of 10 and 13.95, in just their fourth game of the season.
What Canterbury would give for that sort of production with the ball in hand, although their bowlers made hay late on day one to reduce the hosts to 143-7 in reply.
Wellington are unbeaten through three games, taking maximum points.
Leading the batting for Wellington has been another former Canterbury man Michael Papps, who scored a triple century in the first game of the season.
The key to their bowling, according to coach Bruce Edgar, has been that they don’t
allow the batsmen a release.
They are constantly hitting good lines and lengths, forcing batsmen into poor shots.
That was the case on Wednesday when the likes of Tom Latham and Henry Nicholls got out caught behind, wafting at balls they could have and probably should have left.
However Wellington have a fight on their hands on a day dominated by the ball.
Although Canterbury’s batting effort was initially made to look all the more miserable as Michael Papps and Luke Woodcock put on an opening stand of 75.
However, Papps’ departure for 44 triggered a collapse as Wellington lost 5-5 before Blundell and van Beek again combined to briefly steady the ship and earn the first innings lead.
Logan van Beek (centre) celebrates a Canterbury scalp with Wellington teammates.