NZSS BOYS’ 1ST XI CUP FINALS – GAME 5 VS CHRISTCHURCH BOYS’ HIGH SCHOOL - FRIDAY 8 DECEMBER
Facing an unbeaten CBHS side, the 1st XI lost the toss and were asked to field on Fitzherbert Park number 2. The prospect of bowling to a batting outfit that had shown their class throughout the week by not being troubled by any attack was daunting, but the PNBHS bowlers showed good discipline on a flat track. They kept the opening batsmen in check and Cam Harridge snagged a wicket in his 2nd over. Jack Harris followed this up with a caught-and-bowled in his 6th. This brought the tournament’s two leading run-scorers together and they proceeded to put pressure on the field with some professional batting. The PNBHS bowlers and fielders stuck to their task manfully but it wasn’t until the 42nd over that they were able to break the partnership. This led to a flurry of wickets as Bryn Wilson and Jack bowled tightly in the death overs and were able to pick up another 2 wickets each. A good runout was also affected, with the opposition finishing on 261 for 8. Jack Harris took 3 for 58 and Bryn Wilson 3 for 56.
The PNBHS innings started steadily, with all the top order players contributing in the most positive batting performance of the week. Unfortunately, the scoreboard pressure of chasing a large total led to wickets falling regularly. The 1st XI stayed in the fight deep into the innings but the lower order were overwhelmed by the enormity of the task and the team succumbed to 211 all out in the 48th over. Thomas Walshe made 29, Caleb Hansen 39, Bryn Wilson 38 and Rishabh De 28. While this was a loss, the team did itself proud in displaying grit and resilience in the face of tough conditions.
Overall, the team came 5th in the country, which is a trifle disappointing. Looking at the bigger picture, however, they were never out of place in the National finals and would have learned a lot in the process, which is all one can ask as a schoolboy team.
At the closing ceremony, Finn Martin was named as the PNBHS 1st XI MVP for the tournament.