New Zealand A take easy win

An Australia A team led by Brad Haddin and full of talented and experienced players at the international level, were no match for New Zealand A (Black) in the first match in the Top End series played at Mararra Cricket Ground, Darwin.

New Zealand have two teams competing in the Top End series, with New Zealand A (Black) and New Zealand A (White).

Australia A won the toss, and elected to bat.

After losing both openers early, with Jaques out for 3 in
the 2nd over, and Haddin out for 8 in the 4th over, Australia were reeling at 19/2.

Cosgrove started well, with one powerful six and was hitting at a run a ball when on 11 he hit a wide ball to mid off where Aldridge took a low catch. Things were starting to look serious for Australia A who were 30/3 in the sixth over. However, some power hitting from Brad Hodge, who hit 16 fours and 1 six before being clean bowled by Aldridge for 123 got Australia A back on track.

Allrounder Shane Watson was out cheaply for 4, before James Hopes made 61 not out, hitting 3 fours. His 175 run partnership with Brad Hodge added some respectability to the Australia A total.

Australia A made 7/236 from their 50 overs.

For New Zealand A, the bowling honours were evenly shared with McSkimming 57/2, Gillespie 49/3 and Aldridge 28/2

Set 237 to win, New Zealand A opened with sometimes Test and ODI opening combination Michael Papps and Jamie How. After a relatively slow start they settled into the groove to form a partnership that was eventually worth 196 runs. Their 150 partnership came up in 155 balls.

Things were not going to plan in the bowling department for Australia A. Watson was expensive at 28/0 off just three overs and was replaced by Shaun Tait. Seven bowlers were rotated by Haddin in an attempt to break the opening partnership.

At drinks New Zealand A were 100/0.

Papps was eventually caught for 64 by Brad Haddin from a Shane Watson delivery. How finished on 123 not out, with New Zealand A captain Peter Fulton finishing not out on 27.

New Zealand A reached the 237 runs needed for victory with 57 balls to spare and 8 wickets still in hand.

Shane Watson was the only wicket taker for Australia A with 60/2.

Australia A 236
Brad Hodge 123, James Hopes 61
Warren McSkimming 2-57, Mark Gillespie 3-49, Graeme Aldridge 2-28

New Zealand A won by 8 wickets

New Zealand A 239-2 (40.5 overs)
Jamie How 123*, Michael Papps 64
Shane Watson 2-60

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