With new coach former Cantabrian David Trist and several player changes Auckland, which was near full strength yesterday, showed it should be a force to reckon with after finishing last during last summer.
Auckland amassed a challenging 239 for seven from its 50 overs on the early-season Domain Oval wicket and then choked any life out of the Canterbury innings, the red-and-blacks slumping to 86 for nine.
A defiant half century from Mark Hastings, who shared a 55-run last wicket stand with No. 11 Carl Anderson, gave some substance to the innings, but only delayed the inevitable.
Canterbury coach Garry MacDonald praised Auckland for its performance.
``They really took it to us. Their batsmen forced our field back and then were able to work the ball around.
``I don't think we bowled well enough in the channel for long enough periods.''
``Then when we batted we couldn't put away the odd indifferent ball they bowled after they had. The pressure came on and we began to take some risks.''
Auckland's innings was built around a splendid 115-run third wicket stand between Aaron Barnes and Stephen Lynch who both scored half centuries.
The partnership was broken only by a needless run out, Barnes responding to Lynch's call after contributing 61 in 77 balls with six fours.
Canterbury was initially constrained by Chris Drum and Kerry Walmsley while left-arm slow bowler Mark Haslam delivered the killer blows taking out Canterbury's top and middle order with four wickets in eight balls.
Haslam, who came on as first change, completed an outstanding spell of five for 13 and Canterbury's cause was lost despite Hastings hitting hard for 57, from 71 balls, with seven fours.