Whangarei Girls High School 1st XI Cricket team has this week won the Northern Districts Trophy – the first time a school from outside the Waikato has its name engraved on it – to progress to the national finals of the NZCT Cup in December.
In the closest of the 20/20 pool matches against Waikato Diocesan, Jade Litchfield made a fine 63, with some very powerful straight drives to the boundary, before the whole team combined in a slick bowling and fielding performance, including several skilful runouts, to prevent the possibility of their score being overtaken.
Then, in the final against Hillcrest High School from Hamilton, good, straight bowling from Caitlin Phillips and Paige Golightly saw Hillcrest restricted to 80 from their 20 overs. In the runchase, wickets fell regularly to lead to a nervous finish, but with skipper Olivia Lobb at the crease, there was always confidence in the victory, and when Lobb punched the ball to the square leg boundary, scenes of much jubilation followed.
Through the tournament, Lobb was only out once in scoring 176 runs, well supported by Litchfield in the 120’s. The Golightly twins, Paige and Brooke, and Caitlin Phillips, were well supported at the bowling crease by Tia Saunders and Eva Pearson.
However, the standout feature was the excellent fielding, throwing and catching by all eleven players, creating pressure on the opposition batting, which ultimately won the title.
Winning WGHS team Olivia Lobb (c), Jade Litchfield, Paige Golightly, Hayley Green, Maria Wright, Brooke Golightly, Eva Pearson, Tia Saunders, Caitlin Phillips, Sam Hardy, Shannon Bucknell
WGHS 192 without loss (Olivia Lobb 50retired, Jade Litchfield 50retired, Paige Golightly 22retired, Hayley Green 16retired, Shannon Bucknell 14no) defeated Pukekohe HS 88
WGHS 128 – 7 (Jade Litchfield 63) defeated Waikato Diocesan Sch 108 – 7
WGHS 144 – 2 (Olivia Lobb 80no) defeated Te Puke HS 34
WGHS 81 – 7 (Olivia Lobb 37no) defeated Hillcrest HS 80 – 9 (Caitlin Phillips 3-9, Paige Golightly 3-12, Brooke Golightly 1-6, Eva Pearson 1-13, Tia Saunders 1-18)