Bay of Plenty batsman Taylor Bettelheim, rewrote the BOPCA record book, in a ND Fergus Hickey Rosebowl game against Waikato Valley over the weekend (29/21 February 2021).
Bay of Plenty won the toss at the re-arranged venue of Blake Park. While they lost their first wicket without a run being scored, Taylor Bettelheim and Bharat Popli, settled down to produce a 189 run second-wicket partnership.
Popli's dismissal for 81, brought Blair McKenzie to the crease who posted 35 runs before dismissal. Bay number five Fergus Lellman made a useful contribution with 33 runs. Bay of Plenty declared early on day two at 401/3, with Bettelheim still resolute at one end on 211 not out and Tim Pringle with an unbeaten 28 in the book.
Taylor Bettelheim, became just the third (and youngest) Bay of Plenty player, since the Bay's first representative game in 1932, to break through the 200 run mark. Bettelheim followed in the footsteps of Alex Lees (223) and Joe Carter (215no) in belting double centuries.
Taylor's huge total came from 325 balls with nineteen 4's and two 6's. What made the performance even more remarkable, was that it was his second successive Bay representative century, taking his tally to four from just 15 Bay of Plenty appearances.
Bay of Plenty Coach Daniel Flynn said “An excellent innings from Taylor to not only back up from his hundred against Hamilton, but turn this century into a double. He looked in control throughout the chanceless innings against a strong attack. Taylor was well supported by Popli and McKenzie, with Pringle putting a bit of icing on the cake to finish the innings”.
The Bay of Plenty team and management went through a full range of emotions during the two-day game, with the absolute high of a Bay of Plenty double century, to a low ebb of losing first innings points in the drawn match.
Few Bay of Plenty cricket fans, would have given Waikato Valley little chance of taking first innings points from the encounter, as they faced a target over four hundred runs. However they were resolute in their defiance, getting the required runs late on day two.
“We set out to take ten wickets on day two, but unfortunately weren’t able to take some half chances that we managed to create on a pretty docile surface. Credit to Waikato Valley, they played well and managed the chase well”, said Coach Flynn.
Despite the first innings points loss, Bay of Plenty, are still in the hunt for the Fergus Hickey Rosebowl title. Currently sitting five points behind Northland, with a game in hand, a big win over Counties Manukau in the last round of competition could propel them to the ND silverware.
“Heading into the final round of the Fergus Hickey Rosebowl, our destiny is still in our own hands. A positive result against Counties Manukau should see us with a strong chance of winning the competition”.
There was better news from Galloway Park in Hamilton on Sunday (21 February 2021), where the Bay of Plenty Development team defeated arch rivals Hamilton. Bay of Plenty set their rivals a reasonable target after being bowled out for 217. Ben Vyver top scored with 68, with Michael Mitchell posting a half-century.
While Hamilton were in the match for much of the contest - the day belonged to young Tauranga bowler Finn Dempsey, who grabbed a six wicket bag, returning figures of 6/32 as the Waikato side were removed for 196.
Bay of Plenty Development Coach Russell Williams said “Another close game of cricket and the boys battled away with bat and ball, we made a below par score, but our efforts with the ball kept us in it”.
“Again, some individual performances with the bat gave us a score we could defend and a great bowling performance got us across the line. We will be trying to execute more of the same this Sunday against Hamilton again in the final”.
The Bay Development victory, books them a return contest with Hamilton next Sunday (28 February 2021) in the final of the ND Development competition.
ND Fergus Hickey Rosebowl 20/21 February 2021 @ Blake Park Mount Maunganui
Craigs Investment Partners Bay of Plenty 401/4 (Taylor Bettelheim 211no, Bharat Popli 81, Blair McKenzie 35, Fergus Lellman 33, Tim Pringle 28no)
Waikato Valley 402/5 (JWA Field 129, GC Child 86; Peter Drysdale 3/72)
Result: Waikato Valley took first innings points
ND Development 217 (Ben Vyver 68, Michael Mitchell 51, Brandon Laurenzi 30) defeated Hamilton Development 196 (F Hill 56; Finn Dempsey 6/32)
Bay of Plenty Cricket Representative Double Centuries
223 Alex Lees (BOPCA player number 534) v Counties Manukau January 2017
215no Joe Carter (BOPCA player number 506) v Poverty Bay March 2014
211no Taylor Bettelheim (BOPCA player number 546) v Waikato Valley February 2021
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