There have been some bizarre declaration decisions in a cricket match in the past but double 0-for-0 declarations is a rare sight for even the most ardent fans. The scenario has been witnessed just once in Test cricket in a match between South Africa and England in 2000 at Centurion. Another recent sighting of such an event was in a 2013 County Championship match involving Hampshire and Gloucestershire. On Saturday, it happened again, in a first-class match in New Zealand involving Central Stags and Canterbury.
On Day 1 of the Plunket Shield match being played at the Saxton Oval in Nelson, Central Stags, who had been put into bat, reached 301 for seven at the close of play.
However, no play was possible on Day 2 and 3 of the match with rain playing havoc. With the rain gods relenting and allowing the action to resume on the fourth and final day of the match, Central Stags proceeded to add 51 runs to their total before declaring at 352 for seven in their 1st innings.
Willem Ludick starred with the bat, bringing up his maiden first-class hundred.
With just seven overs bowled on the final day of the match, Canterbury declared their first innings at 0 for 0 and that was followed by Central Stags taking the same route, making it pretty much a one-innings affair.
This meant that Canterbury needed to score 353 to win in a possible 89 overs. However, Canterbury collapsed to 131 for nine shortly after tea.
Central Stags pacer Seth Rance was the destroyer-in-chief, taking five straight wickets to put his side on the brink of victory.
However, Canterbury tail was not ready to fold up just yet. The last-wicket Canterbury pair of Andrew Hazeldine and Will Williams steered their team to the unlikeliest of draws by keeping the Central Stags bowlers at bay for an incredible 25.5 overs.
With the end in sight, there was heartbreak for Canterbury as No.11 Hazeldine fell to Ryan McCone on the last ball of the penultimate over of the match, leaving the Stags ecstatic.