Nelson College and the Dolphins had similar comfortable victories in Nelson on Saturday to maintain their unblemished records in the Tasman Premier League.
In a result that would not have been predicted by the cognoscenti, Nelson College comfortably chased down a meagre total at Ngawhatu.
College skipper Fergus Hughes won the toss and opted to bowl first on a green track.
This appeared to have backfired when WTTU raced out to 52 without loss after just five overs.
Tom Ingham bludgeoned the schoolboy attack and with the solid support of Joe O’Connor the visitors appeared to be heading towards a significant total.
However, lanky opening bowler Jarrod McKay had other ideas.
He removed both openers and, in fact, took the first four wickets to fall.
Jarrod also came back to clean up the tail to finish with an outstanding six wicket haul.
Jack Aldridge was the only other batsman to offer any real resistance.
Based on College’s batting display of previous rounds, the 121-run total may have been niggly.
As it transpired, a gritty knock from flamboyant opener Damian Aitken put paid to any aspirations WTTU may have had.
Although Sam Baxendine picked up an early wicket and came back to claim two more, the chase reached its inevitable conclusion in the 38th over.
A wet outfield resulted in a delayed start and a reduction to a 34-over encounter at the Botanics between the Dolphins and Athletic College Old Boys. The Dolphins did not need that many overs to chase down the sub-par total posted by ACOB.
The Blenheim visitors took wickets steadily as Ben Blackman begun the demise and then Jerrym Lamb and Josh Poole continued to make things difficult for ACOB.
No batsman was really able to dominate on the sticky surface with only a pugnacious Josh Simpson able to assert any semblance of creditability.
While BJ Barnett smashed sixes off consecutive deliveries, he was not able to push on.
The 100-run total was always going to be difficult to defend.
Prabodha Arthadivu took the Dolphins to within touch of their chase as he displayed some imperious drives in a classy innings.
Lamb produced a tidy all round performance as his controlled innings took the visitors home in just the seventeenth over to complete a comprehensive victory.
Meanwhile, in Marlborough, the Falcons got their Tasman Premier League cricket title challenge back on track with a four-wicket win over Stoke Nayland at Horton Park.
In a match abbreviated to 35-overs, the home side bowled Stoke Nayland out for 104 and then eased its way to the target for the loss of six wickets in the 32nd over.
The visitors got off to a good start with the bat, thanks to opener Kurt Pahl who top scored with a patient 34 before being third out with the total at 62.
From there the innings folded, some rash shot-making coupled with accurate spin bowling from Alex Kennedy and Matthew Stretch, both of whom claimed 3-14 off seven, ensuring Stoke Nayland were unable to forge any partnerships of note.
Openers Kennedy and Ben Ivory-McCullum patiently saw the Falcons reply through to 27 before Kennedy departed.
The dismissal of experienced batsman Andrew McCaa and Aidan Lavender in quick succession at the same score sent a few shudders through the home side’s dressing room, but Daniel Allen and Ivory-McCullum steadied the ship.
When they both fell with the total at 36 the result was in the balance, but the arrival of Harrison Boyce to join skipper Stretch at the wicket turned the tide.
They put their heads down to blunt the Stoke attack, picking up well-judged singles and the occasional boundary to take the score through to 71 before Boyce departed with his side still needing 34 from six overs.
However, this brought pinch-hitter Tarin Mason to the crease and the left-hander wasted no time in taking the attack to the men in red.
His unbeaten 21 off 10 balls ensured there would be tight finish, with Stretch also not out on a well-judged 26 from 38 deliveries.
Carr, with 4-15 off seven, was the pick of the visiting attack while left-armer Ben Stark, opener Ili Tugaga and Dylan Eginton bowled economically and kept the pressure on through the middle stages.
At a glance:
WTTU 120 (Tom Ingham 45, Joe O’Connor 20, Jarrod MacKay 6/35)
Nelson College 121/5 (Damian Aitken 44, Finn Raxworthy 27, Sam Baxendine 3/12)
College won by five wickets
ACOB 100 (Josh Simpson 35, Jerrym Lamb 4/13, Ben Blackman 3/16, Josh Poole 2/19)
Dolphins 101/4 (Prabodha Arthadivu 26, Jerrym Lamb 23*, Matthew Eden 2/25)
Dolphins won by six wickets.
Stoke Nayland 104 (Kurt Pahl 34, Ben Homan 22, Symon Carr 20, Matthew Stretch 3/14, Alex Kennedy 3/14, Nick Weaver 2/10)
Falcons 105/6 (Stretch 26*, Tarin Mason 21* Carr 4/15)
Falcons won by 4 wickets