At a glance

The Timaru Herald - - TECHNOLOGY&SCIENCE -

Will Hopoate, Daniel Tupou, Michael Jen­nings, Kon­rad Hur­rell, David Fusitu’a, Tui Lolo­head, Ata Hingano, Andrew Fi­fita, Sione Ka­toa, Sio Siua Taukeiaho, Manu Ma’u, Sika Manu (c), Jason Tau­malolo. In­ter­change: Siliva Hav­ili, Sam Moa, Te­vita Pan­gai jr, Ben Mur­doch-Masila.

An­thony Lay­oun, Travis Robinson, James Elias, Adam Doueihi, Ab­bas Miski, Mitchell Moses, Rob­bie Farah (c), Tim Man­nah, Michael Lichaa, Alex Twal, Nick Kas­sis, Ah­mad El­laz, Jamie Clark. In­ter­change: Mitchell Ma­mary, Ray Mou­jalli, Elias Sukkar, Jason Webhe.

‘‘Their start­ing for­ward pack - [Sio Siua] Taukeiaho, [Andrew] Fi­fita and [Jason] Tau­malolo are a mas­sive part of their team.

‘‘They get their sets rolling and their halves can play off the back of that.

‘‘If we can min­imise the me­tres they make, we will def­i­nitely be in the game.

‘‘We are all go­ing to have to have the best games we’ve ever played.’’

Moses said his halves com­bi­na­tion with South Syd­ney’s Farah, a for­mer Australian and NSW State of Ori­gin hooker, had been ‘‘go­ing good’’, but he felt ‘‘last week we had a few hic­cups in our at­tack’’ against Aus­tralia.

‘‘We will watch the video and look to fix that up. We can’t af­ford to go do­ing that against a qual­ity side like Tonga.’’

The 23-year-old, who started his NRL ca­reer at the Wests Tigers club that was once cap­tained by Farah, felt that Lebanon could ‘‘prob­a­bly get that edge over them’’ in the halves if they can con­trol the mid­dle.

‘‘But we are just go­ing to have to stop their for­wards first.

‘‘What­ever the NRL boys in our side can feed off to the other boys, it’s go­ing to be a mas­sive help.’’ 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 wicket tak­ing 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.

Welling­ton are un­beaten through three games, tak­ing max­i­mum points as their bats­men fire and their bowlers take 20 wick­ets a game.

In fact, lead­ing the bat­ting for Welling­ton has been an­other for­mer Can­ter­bury man in Michael Papps, who scored a triple cen­tury in the first game of the sea­son.

But the bowl­ing has been the most im­pres­sive as­pect of Bruce Edgar’s squad.

Ben­nett opens up with Ol­lie New­ton, with van Beek and Iain McPeake pro­vid­ing back up as first and sec­ond change.

The key to their bowl­ing, ac­cord­ing to 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, de­spite Papps, who made 44, and Luke Woodcock fea­tur­ing with a 75-run open­ing stand, stum­bled later in the day be­fore fin­ish­ing at stumps on 143-7.

Otago opener Hamish Rutherford made 142 in his team’s first day score of 319-5 against Cen­tral Dis­tricts in Dunedin.


Hamish Ben­nett is rel­ish­ing his role play­ing for Welling­ton.

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