Black Caps blitz bewildered County

Kyle Coetzer made a fluent 60 at the top of the County's orderKyle Coetzer made a fluent 60 at the top of the County's order
Kyle Coetzer made a fluent 60 at the top of the County's order
It was a one-sided affair at the County Ground as Northamptonshire were given a good hiding in their friendly against New Zealand A .

A weakened home side containing only five of the side who faced Worcestershire on Tuesday, were no match whatsoever for a strong Black Caps outfit who ended up winning by 70 runs.

The Kiwis piled up a gargantuan 424-7 - the highest ever List A total on this ground beating the 360-2 the County compiled against Staffordshire in 1990 - and then restricted the overwhelmed hosts to a truncated 184-2.

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It would be understandable if the carnage was compared to sweets being taken off a small child but this would be unfair as a child would offer more resistance.

From the halfway stage of the innings, which saw the score at an evenly balanced 121-4, the visitors took charge to such a degree that it bordered on cruelty.

With the two Colins - Munro and de Grandhomme the destroyers in chief - an astonishing 303 was taken from the second 25 overs, 130 from the last 10 and 86 from the final five, as the boundaries were peppered both consistently and all too easily.

The pair flayed 199 for the fifth wicket in less than 20 overs and their individual statistics tell you all need to know about the scale of the assault.

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Munro was relatively sedate in getting to his half century from 48 deliveries but he only took a further 30 to pass three figures and 20 more to arrive at 150.

His partner was even more brutal as his breakdown was 50 off 34, 100 off 66 and 150 from 80 and once they had got themselves established, and certainly towards the end of their stay, the duo were pretty much doing as they pleased.

Nobody escaped the punishment as both the off and leg-side boundaries, and the territory beyond on a number of occasions, were given a battering.

Debutant Gemaal Hussain suffered the most as despite getting rid of both centurions, he conceded 101 from his 10 overs as variations in length and line, and not just from him, were harshly dealt with.

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This would’ve seemed a world away during the opening skirmishes as the Kiwis, having won the toss, lost three cheap wickets.

Hamish Rutherford was hit in front by Matt Spriegel, Tom Latham edged a good Maurice Chambers delivery to Kyle Coetzer at first slip and Grant Elliott pulled Hussain’s first ball to deep sqaure-leg.

Anton Devcich and Munro stabilised things until the former hit a Michael Leask, also playing his first senior game for the club, full toss to long-off but rather than create an opening for the hosts, it merely signalled the start of the mayhem.

Even those of a ludicrously optimistic outlook would’ve conceded that the chances of the County overhauling such a target were exceedingly slim so the reply turned into a glorified net session.

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But good practice is good practice and both Coetzer and Stephen Peters, in a rare appearance in coloured clothes, made good use of a true pitch in an opening stand of 105.

The captain was the dominant partner, passing 50 from 44 balls and he had reached 60 before a slack cut found him edging de Grandhomme’s medium pace behind.

Peters expanded his range as he approached his own milestone but his stay ended shortly after as an attempted leg-side swipe could only produce a skied chance to the keeper.

They were actually ahead of the visitors’ score at the halfway point but when the rain turned up a couple of overs later, their tally of 150-2 was 69 short of the Duckworth/Lewis par score.

Eight overs had been lost when play resumed but only four more were possible, in which time Adam Rossington swatted his way to 44, before the bad weather returned.