Women's Under 19 National Tournament
After dropping just one match in six rounds, dominant Central Districts has become the first team to re-stamp their name on NZC's Gillette Venus Women's Under-19 National Tournament.
CD's next generation of female cricketers won the inaugural national Under 19 title for women two seasons ago and finished runners-up last season to Auckland Under 19, pipped at the final hurdle.
Heading into today's conclusive T20 round, Auckland Under 19 had the potential to draw level with CD on points but, with CD having banked four strong wins and a tight one-wicket loss (to Makayla Templeton's Northern Districts Under 19) from the five one-day rounds over the past week, net run rate had already practically assured CD of the 2022 title.
Opener Jessie Hollard was CD's most consistent performer with the bat | PHOTOSPORT
In the event, no mathematical calculations were required as Wairarapa and Central Hinds allrounder Ocean Bartlett captained her CD Under 19 side to a comfortable five-wicket victory over fourth place-getters Otago Under 19 on Bert Sutcliffe Oval in Lincoln.
Runners up this summer, Auckland Under 19 meanwhile lost to Canterbury Under 19 by 25 runs at Christchurch's St Andrew's College - with Libby Stead's Canterbury side taking the bronze position.
Highlights of the 2021/22 Nationals included an unbeaten century from Auckland's Emma Irwin in the penultimate round's 39-run one-day win over ND; and a brace of four-wicket hauls for Central Hinds and Manawatu spinner Ashtuti Kumar who finished as equal top wicket-taker alongside Otago's Chloe Deerness and Wellington's Rachel Bryant.
The trio all finished with 13 wickets - with Kumar's wickets all coming in the 50-over format.
Attention now turns to the men's Gillette Under 19 National Tournament that begins this Saturday, 15 January at the same venues; online schedules are housed here.