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Blundell blasts Wellington to win over ND

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 30/12/2016

Wicketkeeper Tom Blundell's blistering Twenty20 form continued as Wellington beat Northern Districts by nine wickets to keep their play-off hopes burning.

Blundell zipped to an unbeaten 69 off 43 balls as Wellington ran down the home side's 175-2 with an over to spare at Seddon Park in Hamilton.

By cruising to 179-1, Wellington notched a fourth win from five games, after having opened their campaign with four straight defeats.

They climb to third early in the ninth and penultimate round of matches, two points behind second-placed Northern, whose three-match winning streak ended.

The top three teams qualify for the knockout phase.

Black Caps allrounder Corey Anderson smashed an unbeaten 72 off 41 balls after Northern Districts openers BJ Watling (58) and Dean Brownlie (35) compiled solid, if unspectacular knocks.

Veteran opener Michael Papps provided perfect ballast for Wellington's chase, reaching 80 off 59 balls and combining with Blundell for an unbroken 126-run stand.

Blundell is one of New Zealand's premier young glovemen and has passed 60 three times in six T20 knocks.

The 26-year-old is regarded as a potential long-term replacement for Luke Ronchi in the national limited overs set-up.

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