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McLeod leads St Matt’s to finals

New Zealand under-19 international Emma McLeod was in irrepressible form as St Matthew’s Collegiate qualified for the Gillette Venus Cup finals winning the Central Districts playoffs last week.

McLeod smashed 164 not out as St Matt’s amassed an incredible 234-0 batting first in their opening T20 match against Woodford House from Havelock North at Fitzherbert Park, Palmerston North.

The 17-year-old punished all bowlers, scoring at a strike rate of 188 per cent, having faced just 87 balls and finding the boundary with 21 fours but, somewhat remarkably, only one six.

Sally Booth played an excellent supporting role, rotating the strike superbly and finishing on 43no off only 41 balls.

Woodford were never in the hunt against the accurate St Matt’s bowling attack and were dismissed for 43 in the 11th over. India Bartlett and Ava Register had identical figures of four wickets for six runs.

McLeod was again in sublime form in the final against Palmerston North Girls High School [PNGHS], powering her way to 64 from 47 balls, an innings featuring five fours and three sixes.

She combined in a key second-wicket partnership of 77 runs with Vanessa Taylor, who scored a valuable 39 [34 balls, six fours] in St Matt’s total of 145-8 off their 20 overs.

Taylor was quickly back in the action in PNGHS’s reply, running out opener Aria Kearney for one and having Lucy Calkin caught for one to leave the home side struggling at 4-2.

Bartlett and Register again were in fine form, picking up three wickets each as PNGHS were restricted to 105-9.

St Matt’s will now represent Central Districts at the national finals to be played at Lincoln, south of Christchurch, in December.


St Matthew’s 234-0 [Emma McLeod 164no, Sally Booth 43no] beat Woodford House 43 [Ava Register 4-6, India Bartlett 4-6] by 191 runs.

St Matthew’s 145-8 {McLeod 64, Vaness Taylor 39; Summer Lovegrove 3-18] beat Palmerston North Girls High School 105-9 [Myah Dawson 30, Penny Lovegrove 29; Register 3-26, Bartlett 3-20] by 40 runs.

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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