Ravinder making Bay Oval history

Sports correspondent & historian
with Sideline Sid

One of the joys of sport is being on hand when significant history that will last well into the future is made.

Day Two of the Black Caps v South Africa cricket test at the Bay Oval created one such moment for this long-time cricket fan.

Rachin Ravinder wrote his name into NZ Cricket history, when he worked his way to become one of the few Kiwi players to belt over two hundred runs in test cricket.

The emerging super-star hit his way to a big two hundred runs, before he was bowled by Neil Brand with 240 on the scoreboard.

Rachin's massive score, which sits in twelveth spot on the NZC highest test innings, came from 366 balls that were delivered to him in his nine hours at the crease.

The patience of his time in the Bay Oval middle is shown in that just three big hits over the boundary rope accompanied his twenty-six 4s.

Rachin finished his marathon innings to become the 19th New Zealand batsman to post in excess of two hundred runs in an innings.

The twenty-four year old also rewrote Bay Oval history, with the highest score since the first sod was turned on the future international ground in March 2005.

The previous highest mark was set by English test batsman Alex Lees in a short sojourn in the Western Bay of Plenty, in early 2017.

Alex went to town with his willow weapon in a NZC Hawke Cup game between Bay of Plenty and Hamilton in January 2017. The Yorkshireman showcased his future test status in hitting 223 runs in the Bay of Plenty massive total of 701.

In little over a one-month respite from the Northern Hemisphere winter, Alex finished his time in the Western Bay of Plenty with 410 runs, including two centuries, from just five games in the Bay of Plenty blue and gold uniform.

Double century number one at the Bay Oval was another momentous piece of NZC history. Just fourteen years after the Bay Oval was created from nothing more than a scrub and sand wilderness, the first test match was awarded to the Mount Maunganui ground.

The New Zealand Black Caps squared off with the England in a five day thriller. New Zealand wicketkeeper BJ Watling anchored his side's very big first innings of 615, with 205 runs, batting at six.

Two further two-hundred plus innings occupy spots on the Bay Oval honours board.

Northern Districts and Bay of Plenty master-blaster Joe Carter was the first cab off the rank, with an unbeaten 215 for the Bay against Poverty Bay in the 2013/14 cricket season.

Last but not least is Central Districts top order batter Brad Schumulian, with 203 in his side's encounter with ND some years ago.

There is plenty of praise for the Bay Oval wicket, which can deliver an avalanche of runs,  whilst also providing  plenty of benefits for good line and length bowling.

With the Bay Oval now firmly entrenched as an international cricket ground the expectation is that two hundred + scores will continue to hit the cricket headlines.

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