The tournament was played over four days with Otago Boys’ High School, Hutt International Boys’ School, Wellington College and Mount Albert Grammar School all taking part.
“Our boys played some entertaining cricket and headed into the last game against the home side St Paul’s Collegiate knowing a win would mean they would be crowned champions and bring home the Vettori Shield,” says Head of Cricket Matthew Cowie.
St Paul’s scored an even par 152 batting first with Cory Dickson (Year 10, Averill), the pick of our bowlers with 5/18. In reply, we got off to a blistering start and were steady at 120/1 and then the speed wobbles hit, and we lost 5/20 to be 140/6.
Some nervous players and coaches were watching as Jett Robertson (Year 10, Greenbank) and Harry Holdsworth (Year 10, Selwyn) kept their nerves during the final moments to bring the team to victory.
Pick of the batsmen was Cory Dickson with 48 to cap off a man of the match performance.
Full Vettori Shield Tournament Wrap Up by Head of Cricket, Matthew Cowie
Round One: King’s College vs. Wellington College (T20)
King’s College - 147/9 off 20 overs in reply Wellington 131/7 off 20 overs
Charles Cleal 29, Muhammed Abbas 19 and Jett Bhatia 3/10 off 4 overs.
This was the first game of the tournament and the team won the toss and elected to bat. We were able to build solid partnership throughout the innings with six players reaching double figures getting us a good total of 147. In reply we were able to stem Wellington College early, as a result the run rate was always creeping up. We did lose our way near the end with a whopping 42 extras that got Wellington into the match but they were never close enough and fell 16 runs short.
Round Two: King’s College vs. Mt Albert Grammar School (T20)
King’s College - 141/8 off 20 overs in reply Mt Albert Grammar 95/7 off 20 overs
Charles Cleal 35, Cory Dickson 33 and Jett Robertson 2/11 off 2 overs.
With Mount Albert Grammar School as the only other Auckland team in the tournament, our boys were keen to prove who was the better side. We won the toss again and elected to bat, as the pitch was quite flat. We lost two early wickets but then we had big partnerships in the middle to set up an imposing 141 off 20 overs. In reply Mt Albert Grammar School got off to the worst start losing a wicket on the first ball of the game. From there they never really recovered and came up 46 runs short and our team finished off Day 1 with two wins.
Round Three: King’s College vs. Otago Boys’ High School (50 overs)
King’s College - 194 all out in 44 overs in reply Otago Boys’ 197-3 off 34 overs.
Cory Dickson 57, Nathan Robinson 32 and Tama Morris 2/36 off 6 overs.
The boys were full of confidence coming into the game against Otago Boys’ High School. We won the toss and batted and got off to a great start with Cory and Nathan putting on 84 for the first wicket. When Charles got out in the 32 over we were 137/4 with plenty of batting to come and a score of 250 looked on the cards. However, poor running and maybe the fatigue from the T20 games the day before affected us with our last six wickets falling for 57 runs to be all out with six overs left. This seemed to deflate the team even though 194 was still a competitive total.
In our bowling innings, we started off well having them 26/2 but then the wheels fell off with poor field settings and erratic bowling giving Otago Boys’ High School too many boundaries. Again, extras hurt us with 45 giving away and before we knew it Otago Boys’ High School had reached our total only three down.
Round Four: King’s College vs. Hutt International Boys’ College (50 overs)
Hutt International Boys’ College 69 all out in reply King’s College 71/5 off 15 overs
Muhammed Abbas 4/8 off 7 overs, Jett Bhatia 2/10 off 4 overs and Jett Robertson 25
After the previous day’s loss to Otago Boys’ High School, the team had a good long chat and came out firing against Hutt International Boys’ College. We lost our first toss and were asked to field. Muhammed Abbas bowled beautifully and ripped the heart out of the top order with four wickets, tight bowling from the other end saw us constantly stem the runs and put our opposition to the sword with only 12 extras bowled. In the end we had them out for 69. In reply we were in no mood to hang around and finished the game off early inside 15 overs although with a few too many wickets lost.
Round Five: King’s College vs. St Paul’s Collegiate (50 overs)
St Paul’s 151/10 off 50 overs in reply King’s College 152/6 off 30 overs
Cory Dickson 5/16 off 10 overs, Jeet Bhatia 3/19 off 10 overs and Cory Dickson 48, Nathan Robinson 38 and Muhammed Abbas 41.
Our boys knew a win against St Paul’s Collegiate would be enough to win the tournament as other results had gone our way. We lost the toss and were asked to bowl again. We made a tactical call to open with spin, which proved huge in the context of the game. Cory Dickson ripped through their top order bowling ten overs straight for five wickets. At one point we had them 107/9 with another spinner Jeet Bhatia continuing where Cory left off with three wickets. However, it’s not over till the final wicket and St Paul’s Collegiate number 10 and 11 put on a crucial 45 runs and frustrated our boys going into their bowling innings.
However, with a flat pitch and a strong batting line-up, we knew we had the tools to get this total. Cory Dickson, Nathan Robinson and Muhammed Abbas were all-aggressive at the top of the order and put St Paul’s Collegiate bowlers to the sword. We were 121/1 off 22 and cruising towards the total. But complacency crept in and the boys started to try blast their way to the total. As a result, we lost 5/20 with some ordinary cricket shots and the pressure was setting in. We needed a couple of calm heads and Harry Holdsworth and Jett Robertson provided that and scored the necessary runs to see us home and with it the Vettori Shield.