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Young cricketer meets heroes

Martinborough junior cricketer Ben Jaspers scored a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet the superstars at the Basin Reserve, Wellington, last Friday.

The nine-year-old won an ANZ Coin Toss Kid competition, allowing him to join Black Caps captain Tim Southee and English counterpart Ben Stokes in the middle of the famed ground for the pre-match toss to determine who would bat or bowl first.

Jaspers, who has been playing club cricket since he was five, said, “It was the best time of my life. I also saw one of my friends from school in the crowd, [and] he cheered me on.”

Although the toss was a highlight, Jaspers reckoned his favourite part of the day was being given a bat from New Zealand wicketkeeper Tom Blundell, which has been attached to his hand ever since.

“I’m going to keep it until I’m grown up. It was so cool to meet Kane Williamson and Tom Blundell — they signed my bat.”

Jaspers thought he learnt a lot from watching the match on Friday, saying, “I know to never bowl at the pads of a batsman.”

Chris Cogdale
Chris Cogdale
Chris “Coggie” Cogdale has extensive knowledge of sport in Wairarapa having covered it for more than 30 years, including radio for 28 years. He has been the sports guru at the Wairarapa Times-Age since 2019.

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