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Otago Volts stunned Wellington Firebirds in a mighty close game as they came from behind to win their second encounter of the tournament by one run. With the win, they've moved up to the top of the table and will be looking to continue their winning run when they meet Northern Districts in their upcoming game on 30th December at Alexandra. The defending champions, Northern Districts, are coming off a narrow loss to Central Districts and will be keen to register a win here. Considering the might of both the sides in question, this game is going to be a treat to watch for the fans across the globe.
For more than three-fourths of the game, Otago Volts were on the back-foot in their recently concluded game against Wellington Firebirds and the Volts will be pretty pleased with the way they snatched win from the jaws of a defeat.
As much as Volts bowlers contributed to their superb comeback, it was ably assisted by some reckless and idiotic exhibition of batting by the Firebirds. Otago's win was scripted by an inspirational performance from Namibian superstar, Christi Viljoen, who derailed Firebirds' innings after they looked all set to cruise the target with 107 for no loss.
Viljoen took 4 for 23 in his four-over spell to storm his team to a one-run victory. Earlier with the bat, Otago Volts somehow managed to get to a competitive total of 167 which was subpar considering the size of ground and the batting beauty the surface was. Anaru Kitchen and Neil Broom were the chief contributors for the Volts as the duo scored 52 off 34 and 34 off 27 at the top of the order respectively.
Hamish Rutherford, NT Broom, Anaru Kitchen, Shawn Hicks, Ben Cox, Joshua Finnie, MJ Rippon, Nathan Smith, C Viljoen, Jacob Duffy, Matthew Bacon.
The Knights started off their title defense with a colossal win over Wellington Firebirds but failed to repeat the feat in their second match, against Central Stags. It was a collective effort from the team with a couple of brilliant individual performances which saw them home in the opening encounter of the tournament.
They, however, failed to exhibit anything of that sort in their recently completed match where they were pitted against Central Stags. Batting first, the Knights somehow managed to score 156 in their allotted twenty overs on a tricky batting surface. Tim Seifert's vital knock of 55 was instrumental in taking Knights to a 150-plus total.
It was all going well for them with the ball as well up until Mitchell Santner was hit for a six by Tom Bruce. The Stags slowly but steadily gathered much-needed momentum with a few lusty blows thereafter. Darryl Mitchell was smashed for 18 in his one over which proved to be the game-changing over. Although Knights' bowlers toiled hard, it was just some excellent bowling from Stags' skipper as Knights lost the match with four balls and 3 wickets to spare.
Anton Devcich, Tim Seifert, Dean Brownlie, Brett Hampton, Corey Anderson, Daryl Mitchell, Mitchell Santner, Daniel Flynn, Scott Kuggeleijn, IS Sodhi, Brett Randell.
The Volts have played some extraordinary Cricket up until now and their top of the table position validates that. They've, however, struggled to bowl well in the powerplay overs which could hurt them against the powerful top order of Northern Knights. Knights are coming off a heart-wrenching loss and will be desperate to win here. The Knights bat deep and with a better lineup on paper, they are better-placed to win the upcoming encounter on Sunday.
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