A dramatic finish to the Black Caps Cricket World Cup match with the West Indies on Sunday morning had Kiwi cricket fans chewing their nails as the game went down to the wire.
Once again our two local heroes of skipper Kane Williamson and Trent Boult played leading roles in a contest that was on a knife edge in the last hour of play.
Captain Kane arrived at the wicket in just the second ball of the match after Martin Guptill was removed for a duck. The Black Cap skipper first steadied the ship, before displaying his full arsenal of shots to post his highest ODI score, when he was eventually removed with 148 runs to his name.
Kane worked the ball beautifully around the Old Trafford outfield, to belt 14 fours and one six in his 215 minutes at the crease. With Windies master blaster Chris Gayle waiting in the wings, the match was evenly poised, when the Black Caps posted 291 for the loss of eight wickets.
Trent called on all his knowledge and experience to remove Gayle, when the West Indies whirlwind was closing in on a century. A further three wickets saw the Black Cap swing bowler finish with four, at a cost of just 30 runs.
Trent's four wicket bag was just his entree to a spectacular finish to an absolute thrilling contest.
The game was turned around in spectacular style when Carlos Braithwaite hammered a century of eighty balls.
With the last two Windies batsmen at the crease, they needed just six to win with seven balls remaining. Braithwaite hammered what looked to be a certain six, before Boult plucked the ball out of the air centimetres from the boundary rope, giving the Black Caps a five run win.
The two Western Bay Black Caps stars dual success in Manchester was another in the chain of match winning performances that the pair have pulled off since meeting as youngsters on the Bay of Plenty junior cricket pathway.
Both Kane and Trent looked headed for the top during intermediate, however with a one year age gap between the pair; they didn't become Bay of Plenty representative team mates until 2006/07 season in the Bay of Plenty Coastland under 17 side.
From then on their burgeoning cricket careers became intertwined. A rare Bay of Plenty Under 19 match in 2008 against Waikato Valley showed a little of their future potential, with Kane belting an unbeaten 131 and Trent taking three wickets for just 10 runs.
From there on, they have been team mates in the New Zealand under 19 side and Northern Districts teams, before becoming an integral unit in the Black Caps.
While we are currently shivering in the depths of winter, Sideline Side can’t wait to see Kane and Trent walk out to face England in the inaugural Bay Oval test match in November.