Canterbury Magicians 149-4 in 20 overs (Erin Bermingham 65*, Frankie Mackay 30) lost to Wellington Blaze 150-6 in 19.4 overs (Rebecca Burns 62) by four wickets at Basin Reserve, Wellington.
In a top of the table clash in front of a large and building crowd, Erin Bermingham and Rebecca Burns both put on a big hitting show, but it was the home team that took the win with two balls remaining in a tight thriller.
The Blaze take top spot having played all their pool matches and must wait on other results to see if it’s good enough to make the final – the Magicians will be hard on their heels, showing today they have the class to go all the way in this competition.
The Magicians’ innings took a while to get underway on a pitch that took a bit of playing in – but Frankie Mckay (30) started timing her shots to get things underway before she lost her opening partner Kirsty Nation (17) in the eighth over, then her own wicket in the tenth, adjudged LBW trying to whip Amelia Kerr off her pads.
At first drop, Erin Bermingham went hard from the start, finding the fence repeatedly through the leg side, and then all around the ground.
Jacinta Savage fell to a tremendous catch in the deep by Jessica Kerr for eight, but Bermingham stormed on, striking four fours from Kerr in the last over to help the Magicians post 149-5 on a good looking batting deck.
Wellington timed their chase well, and were prepared to attack despite losing wickets at regular intervals.
Opener Rebecca Burns was seeing the ball extremely well, coming down the pitch to drop kick through the leg side and hit down the ground through her innings.
Lucy Doolan looked set for a big score until she was stumped for 22 in the fifth – Kate Ebrahim was delighted to bowl Amelia Kerr for one next over, while Liz Perry (17) and Thamsyn Newton (15) also supported Burns without kicking on.
Burns eventually went trying to hit Mackay out of the ground, only to be caught for 49 with her side still needing 28 and two new women at the crease.
Momentum see-sawed through the final overs with Jessica Kerr (20) playing finisher – six were needed from the last over, and Kerr was able to get a thick edge to the third ball to tie the scores and finish the job next ball with a single to claim the win in front of a tremendous Basin crowd.