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Marshall sets up easy ND win

Northern Districts captain James Marshall's good batting form was sufficient for his side to see off an ordinary target set by Wellington in the opening game of the State Twenty20 competition in Hamilton on Thursday.

Northern Districts won by seven wickets.

Wellington battled its way to 131-8 in its innings as it attempted to make best use of an older pitch.

Grant Elliott looked the most effective of the Wellington order in scoring 34 off 29 balls but the lack of a big, and dominating, innings prevented Wellington from posting a higher score.

Neil Parlane and Mark Houghton hit 18 each, Houghton being unbeaten while Luke Woodcock contributed 14 and Chris Nevin 13.

Left-armer Bruce Martin picked up 2-21 from his four overs while Brent Arnel took 2-28. The least expensive was Graeme Aldridge who took 1-20 in his four overs.

Nick Horsley hit two fours in the first three balls of the innings but was then dismissed from Iain O'Brien's bowling.

However, that merely united England international Andrew Strauss with Marshall and they added 74 runs in little more than seven overs to seize the initiative from the visitors.

Strauss struck 28 off 18 balls while Marshall hit 58 off 41 balls, with his 50 coming off 37 balls and including seven boundaries.

Daniel Flynn hit a run-a-ball 13 but then Peter McGlashan ensured the end came quickly when scoring 20 off 18 balls, as ND claimed the win in 15.3 overs.

Of the Wellington bowlers only international off-spinner Jeetan Patel was able to contain the batsmen with his figures of 0-11 from his four overs.

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