Both the men’s and women’s sides share the lead on the competition points table and a win to either team will see them take a slender lead as the domestic battle nears the end of round one competition.
In the men’s competition, the Muri Creeps and Turangi, which is the defending champion, have three wins and a loss so far in the competition.
Veteran batsman Vane Tangimetua will lead the charge for Turangi side and will be supported by the likes of hard hitting Mapu Maoate and David Piakura. In bowling, Tiri Toa and Vane Tangimetua Jr are expected to spearhead their campaign against a resilient Creeps.
The Creeps, which are proving giant killers in the competition so far, have stopped the winning runs of Titikaveka Titans and Avana and will rely on the likes of right-hand batsman Rama Taiki and Pakia Wichman.
In bowling, Mike Hoff, who took two wickets against the Titans last week, and Polly Ieremia will be leading the charge.
In the women’s battle, defending champions Muri and newcomer Turangi both are undefeated with three wins each.
The home side will be hoping for another brilliant partnership of Memory Kauvai and Jasmanda Tuaputa in their bid to amass maximum runs to win the clash. Muri’s Daena Kataina and Punanga Kaveao are also among the top batswomen in the competition. Young Tuaputa, who took seven wickets in the 10 wicket win against Nikao last week, has proven deadly with her throws.
For Turangi, Mona Amoa, June George, Perina Tekoronga and Ina Willie will be the leading batswomen while George and Tekura Kaukura will lead the charge in bowling.
The More Amoa-coached side has been in grand form in their past three wins and is determined to topple Muri to take the lead in the women’s competition.
Cook Islands Cricket Association chief executive officer Davis Teinaki said the clash between the leaders would be an exciting one.
“It’s all about the winner taking the lead in the competition, so this should make an interesting tussle,” he said.
In the other women’s matches starting at 12.30pm, Tupapa will take on Matavera while Takuvaine will host Avana.
In the other men’s competition starting at 3.15pm, the wounded Titans will battle Matavera, Takuvaine will host Arorangi, Tupapa I will take on Nikao and Tupapa II will play Avana.
- Rashneel Kumar
Fixtures: Men’s – Muri-Turangi at Muri (Umpire Te), Titans-Matavera at Titikaveka (Umpire Olly), Takuvaine-Arorangi at Happy Valley (Umpire Pavai), Tupapa I-Nikao (Numa), Tupapa II-Avana (Front). Women’s – Muri-Turangi at Muri (Te), Tupapa-Matavera (Numa), Takuvaine-Avana (Pavai)