- Three players (two in one match) reach 100th cap milestones
- Hundredth first-class appearance for umpire Tim Parlane
Round 3 Plunket Shield has seen major milestones knocked off before a ball has even been bowled.
With the start of the last first-class round ahead of the BLACKCAPS v England Tests, it’s a special occasion for three domestic players — and one of New Zealand’s most respected umpires.
From this morning until Monday in Nelson, Wellington and Dunedin, Daniel Flynn (Northern Districts), Hamish Rutherford (Otago Volts), man of the moment Devon Conway (Wellington Firebirds) and umpire Tim Parlane will all be marking their one hundredth game.
🙌🏽 SPECIAL MOMENT for umpire Tim Parlane today who will stand in his 100th First-Class fixture today when the @wgtnfirebirds take on @aucklandcricket at the @BasinReserve 🏏 Congrats Tim, what an achievement! #cricketnation @BLACKCAPS pic.twitter.com/2K9MPPH9wR— Basin Reserve (@BasinReserve) November 7, 2019
Northern Districts captain and former BLACKCAP Daniel Flynn, 34, becomes the sixth player to chalk up one hundred first-class caps for New Zealand’s youngest first-class team — the only Domestic team the Rotorua-born, Tauranga-raised top order batsman with the devastating pull shot has represented since debuting against Otago in Gisborne in January 2005.
Hamish Rutherford — like Flynn, an erstwhile BLACKCAPS batsman — is playing his 56th first-class match for the Volts, which combines with 16 appearances for New Zealand, 14 for English County Derbyshire, four for Worcestershire, two for Essex, four for New Zealand A, and four for various New Zealand XIs for 100 first-class appearances.
The 30-year-old made his first-class debut against the same team and at the same venue as his 100th game today — versus Northern Districts at Dunedin’s University of Otago Oval. It was an inauspicious beginning to an impressive career, the youngster bowled by Trent Boult for a golden duck in his only innings on debut.
Rutherford has gone on to score 14 first-class centuries, nine of which have been for the Otago Volts — the only Plunket Shield side he has represented.
Umpire Tim Parlane, 61, stood in his first first-class match at University of Otago Oval in February 2004, a State Championship (now known as the Plunket Shield, its original name) match between the Otago Volts and Auckland Aces — a match in which future ICC Elite Panel umpire Chris Gaffaney was playing.
Today, Parlane officiates in his 100th first-class match — which includes three in South Africa, one in London and one in Australia — at the Basin Reserve, where Plunket Shield leaders the Wellington Firebirds are hosting the Auckland Aces.
🙌🏽 SPECIAL MOMENT for umpire Tim Parlane today who will stand in his 100th First-Class fixture today when the @wgtnfirebirds take on @aucklandcricket at the @BasinReserve 🏏 Congrats Tim, what an achievement! #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/EarbGw5peJ— BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) November 7, 2019
Former BLACKCAP, Canterbury allrounder and current Central Stags Assistant Coach (Plunket Shield first three rounds) Craig McMillan said it was a tribute to Parlane's consistency to achieve a 100th milestone as an umpire.
"That's real longevity in the game, and a rare milestone for an umpire in this day and age.
"It speaks of that consistency of performance that players are always looking for from officials. Tim is hugely respected by everyone around the traps and it's a tremendous achievement."
In the same Basin Reserve match today, Firebird Devon Conway — who wrote headlines and rewrote recordbooks with his triple century at the same ground last week — will reach his 100th first-class match overall.
Born in Johannesburg and, like Flynn and Rutherford, a left-handed top-order batsman, Conway’s record includes 52 matches for Gauteng, nine for the Dolphins, 13 for KwaZulu-Natal Inland, and 12 for the Lions before emigrating to New Zealand ahead of the 2017/18 Plunket Shield season.
Compact and ruthless on the cut shot, Conway, 28, played his first match for the Wellington Firebirds in March 2018 — and has already scored a head-turning 1,405 runs for the team from just 13 matches at an 82.64 average.
That includes an unbeaten century in his first season with the side (103*), an unbeaten double century in his second season last summer (203*), and an unbeaten triple century this season (327*), in 17 first-class centuries overall, to date.
Otago's Neil Broom meanwhile remains poised on 99 appearances for the Volts. In Nelson, meanwhile, Hawke's Bay pace bowler Ben Stoyanoff will make his first-class debut for the Central Stags against Canterbury, who have put the Stags in to bat at Saxton Oval.
MOST FIRST-CLASS APPEARANCES FOR ONE TEAM IN NEW ZEALAND