Cricket: Ross Taylor winds back the clock in Central Stags' Super Smash win over Northern Brave

Blackcaps icon Ross Taylor wound back the clock for Central Stags, playing a six-laden knock in his side's Twenty20 Super Smash victory over Northern Brave.

Taylor cleared the rope three times in his short yet vital innings, bringing out his signature slog sweep for those in attendance at New Plymouth's Pukekura Park, as Central Districts chased down 218 for a three-wicket victory.

Northern Brave spinners Mitchell Santner and Joe Walker - twice - were both dispatched over the midwicket boundary, as Taylor recorded his highest score of the Super Smash season so far, with 30 from just 14 balls.

Taylor retired from international cricket at the start of 2022, finishing as the Blackcaps' leading scorer in both test and ODI cricket.

But the 38-year-old is still turning out for his domestic side, who now sit second on the Super Smash ladder after three games.

After Stags captain Tom Bruce won the toss and chose to bowl first, the Brave hammered 217/9 in their 20 overs, played on the postage-stamp-sized boundaries at Pukekura Park.

Blackcaps pair Jeet Raval (60 off 29) and Tim Seifert (59 off 30) led the way for the Brave with the bat. 

For the Stags, Blackcap Doug Bracewell put in an exceptional display to take 2/30 from his four overs, as the only player on either side to concede less than eight runs an over, while Bruce (3/35) and Raymond Toole (3/44) also stood out.

In reply, the Stags' chase was anchored by an impressive display of power hitting from Josh Clarkson (58), who hit a 22-ball half-century. 

Bracewell backed up his efforts with the ball with an 18-ball 39 with the bat, hitting five sixes in an 83-run partnership with Clarkson.  

And needing seven from the last over, Brett Randell clubbed his first ball for four to seal the Stags' victory - their second of the season.

The Brave meanwhile are third on the ladder with one win and two defeats from their first three games, ahead of both Canterbury Kings and Otago Volts on net run rate.

Northern Brave 217/9 (Raval 60, Seifert 59; Bruce 3/35) Central Stags 219/7 (Clarkson 58, Bracewell 39; Hampton 2/33)