Otago Daily Times

Fletcher, Kerr star in wins that set up twin WgtnCanty finals

- ADRIAN SECONI

was an incredible feeling.’’

Defending women's champion the Wellington Blaze kept its fourpeat dream alive by beating the Auckland Hearts by 35 runs at Auckland's Eden Park Outer Oval yesterday.

Third qualifiers after the regular season, the Blaze turned the tables on the Hearts — who four days earlier had beaten the Wellington side by just seven runs.

In the crunch eliminatio­n match though, it was a comfortabl­e victory for the starstudde­d Blaze, set up by an unbeaten 54 off 44 balls from Melie Kerr in a first innings total of 150 for six, after captain Maddy Green had elected to bat.

Green and Sophie Devine had given the Blaze a strong start before Kerr capitalise­d, and then the Blaze got off to the perfect start with the ball, with Devine bowling dangerous opener Anna Peterson first ball with a corker.

Katie Perkins and Bella Armstrong steadied the ship for the Hearts with a 65run stand for the third wicket, but a run out and two wickets in the space of four balls in the 18th over, bowled by Kerr — who ended with two for 16 from her four overs — was a killer blow from which the Hearts could not recover.

The Aucklander­s were only able to limp to 115 for seven.

Wellington Blaze will now meet top qualifier the Canterbury Magicians in the women’s final tomorrow at the Basin Reserve, before the men’s final, for a Wellington­Canterbury double header. —

 ?? PHOTO: KAYLA HODGE ?? Guardian . . . North Otago Cricket Associatio­n chairman Peter Cameron reflects on his time with the associatio­n at Centennial Park yesterday.
PHOTO: KAYLA HODGE Guardian . . . North Otago Cricket Associatio­n chairman Peter Cameron reflects on his time with the associatio­n at Centennial Park yesterday.
 ??  ?? Amelia Kerr
Amelia Kerr

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