Wednesday, April 24, 2024

HPCC season in review: Times’ top 10 moments

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From left; Josie Penfold, Skye Bowden, Marama Downes and Amberly Parr pose with the Pearl Dawson trophy. Photo / Jackie Tran Van /

After a season ravaged by Auckland’s flooding, adverse weather and Cyclone Gabrielle, the Howick Pakuranga Cricket Club (HPCC) made it count.

Ahead of the club’s senior prizegiving on April 15, the Times takes a look back at our favourite moments from the 2022/23 season.

10. Multiple players selected for higher honours

Howick Pakuranga premier women’s and Auckland Hearts player Molly Penfold signs a cap for a HPCC youngster during a domestic match.

Multiple HP players who took to the field for the east Auckland club this season were selected for higher honours.

This included two premier women selected for the White Ferns T20 World Cup campaign in South Africa and nine selected for domestic sides.

The full list was:

  • Brooke Halliday- New Zealand White Ferns, Northern Districts domestic Women’s.
  • Molly Penfold- New Zealand White Ferns, New Zealand Women XI, Auckland Hearts domestic Women’s.
  • Saachi Shahri- New Zealand Women XI, Auckland Hearts domestic Women’s.
  • Skye Bowden- Auckland Hearts domestic women’s.
  • Josie Penfold- Auckland Hearts domestic women’s.
  • Amberly Parr- Auckland Hearts domestic women’s.Holly Topp- Northern Districts domestic women’s.
  • Marama Downes- Northern Districts domestic women’s.
  • Holly Lightbourne- Auckland U19 Women’s, Auckland Māori secondary school girls.
  • Ayaan Lambat- Auckland U17 Women’s.
  • Neena Woollaston- Auckland U17 Women’s, Auckland U19 Women’s, Auckland Cricket Rangatahi Female leadership programme.
  • Lachie Stackpole- Auckland U19 Men’s.
  • Selwin Sanjay- Auckland U17 Men’s.
  • Connor Greening- Auckland U17 Men’s.

9. Lambat’s breakthrough season

Rising star Ayaan Lambat after taking a five-wicket haul against Parnell

After turning just 14-years-old in October, Ayaan Lambat has become somewhat of a reliable player for HPCC’s premier women.

Often spinning her opposition in circles, Lambat finished the season with 16 wickets for HPCC and often had high wicket-taking games.

Her best figures for the premier women this year came in a limited overs match against Parnell where she took 5-34.

Lambat featured in the Auckland District’s tournament for the Manukau U17 women’s side where she had an impressive few games, most notably taking six wickets for six runs against Waitemata.

8. Woollaston takes six of the best

Youngster Neena Woollaston had a great season, becoming a constant figure in the HPCC’s premier women’s side and even made her captaincy debut.

Neena Woollaston of the HPCC premier women took six wickets for only five runs in their domination of Takapuna

Woollaston proved her worth in the side’s penultimate limited overs competition match against Takapuna, where she took six wickets for just five runs.

She also represented the Manukau Districts U19 women’s team in the Auckland Districts tournament, where she was awarded as the top wicket taker for the whole competition.

Woollaston will be a key figure for the HPCC premier women side looking ahead to upcoming seasons.

7. Walsh & Young’s damaging partnership

Bill Walsh and Daniel Young had a great season with the bat, scoring more than 1000 runs collectively.

The two combined for an impressive, unbeaten 149 run opening partnership in their two-day match against Kumeu. Young scored 72 not out and Walsh 70 not out.

Unfortunately, due to Auckland rain, the match was abandoned and the two were unable to continue their damaging partnership, which would have been sure to defeat Kumeu.

6. Halliday & Downes’ batting masterclass

While Brooke Halliday only featured in one game for the HPCC premier women this s

White Fern and Northern Districts representative, Brooke Halliday notched up an impressive 108 not-out off 81 balls.

eason, she made it count when she combined with Marama Downes in a batting masterclass against Auckland University.

Halliday scored an unbeaten 108 from 81 balls and Tania Dalton Foundation Scholarship recipient Downes scored 82 off 100 balls.

The two combined for an 85-run partnership and helped the side to a total of 299.

The premier women went on to defeat Auckland University by 129 runs in one of their most convincing wins of the season.

5. Penfold’s consecutive golden ball season

HPCC premier women’s most successful bowler of the season, Josie Penfold recorded a five-wicket haul in their third place play-off against Auckland University.

All-rounder Josie Penfold had high expectations coming into the season after being named premier women’s bowler of the year in the 2021/22 season.

Penfold exceeded those expectations, once again taking the most wickets for the premier women in their standout season, finishing with 28 wickets.

Her bowling efforts against Auckland University (5-28) led the side to a third-place finish in the Prichard Cup limited overs competition.

One of her best bowling games was against North Shore in a T20 match where she finished with figures of 4-8.

4. Winn’s platinum bat

Liam Winn (centre) after scoring 112 not out against Waitakere.

Liam Winn had a breakthrough season with the bat, becoming a constant figure in the HPCC premier men’s line-up.

Winn had 16 innings with the bat over three formats throughout the season and scored a total of 613 runs.

He notched up two centuries, one in HPCC’s two-day match against Waitakere (112* off 67 balls), inclusive of 12 4s and three 6s and another against Suburbs-New Lynn (102 off 86 balls).

He also scored three half centuries.

Winn’s overall batting average for the season was 47.15 and proved most impressive in the one-day format with an average of 67.5 runs.

3. Lower grades prove HPCC’s depth

Premier reserve men player Patrick Maher notched up 108 in the team’s dominant 200-run victory over Kumeu.

Perhaps some of the greatest performances from the HP’s cricket season came from the lower grades of the club, proving how much depth it has.

Notable performances with the bat included Paddy Maher scoring 108 off just 74 balls for the premier reserves, Jasmeet Rattan scoring two hundreds in the same week (101* and 119) for the U15 Maroons, and Lachie Stackpole scoring 150 for the premier reserves in their final match.

There was no lack of talent with the ball either. Kavi Minhas took six wickets for 25 runs for the premier reserves against Kumeu and Ben Underhill had figures of 5-10, inclusive of a hat-trick for the club’s 7th grade against Suburbs New-Lynn.

2. Spin Twins lead the way

Harmeet Singh took the most wickets for the club in the 2022/23 season with 30.

The HPCC premier men’s spin duo of Harmeet Singh and Kimesh Chetty collectively took the bulk of the side’s wickets this season.

Singh finished the season with the most wickets for the premier men, taking 30, and Chetty was second, taking 19.

Often ripping through batting line-ups, Singh and Chetty created headaches for their opposition with multiple four and five wicket matches.

Singh and Chetty often performed well together. Their best match being a T20 against Eden Roskill when Singh took 5-12 and Chetty took 4-10.

1. Premier Women win 2023 `Pearl Dawson T20 championship

And finally, the Times’ favourite moment of the 2022/23 HPCC season was the premier women taking out the Pearl Dawson T20 championship.

The premier women went through the competition unbeaten, with the star-studded line-up of women’s domestic players showing their strength.

The HPCC premier women celebrate with the Pearl Dawson trophy after defeating Cornwall at Lloyd Elsmore Park. Photo / Jackie Tran Van /

The women bowled first against a strong Cornwall side and dismissed them for just 90 at the hands of standouts Marama Downes (2-20), Josie Penfold (2-18), Ayaan Lambat (2-16) and Amberly Parr (3-16).

HP openers Saachi Shahri (21 off 28) and Radhika Patel (19 off 28) all but sealed the deal and Josie Penfold closed the match out (19 off 23).

The premier women raised the trophy in front of a home crowd at Lloyd Elsmore Park to mark the peak of their season.

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