The A Grade team won the toss and batted first at Prospect Oval. We found the going tough in the first session with the pitch a little up-and-down and the outfield extremely slow. John Dalton (30) and Adam Hose (32) looked set but we lost both just before lunch and were 3/83 at the break. The next session was a disaster as the run rate slowed to a crawl and the wickets tumbled. We lost 7/41 in 26 overs after lunch and were bundled out for just 124.
Some wise heads in the change room knew the wicket had been a little difficult and did say, “wait until both have batted” but even they wouldn’t have foreseen what was to come. Sam Miller struck a couple of nice drives then smoked one to mid off where Hiran Lecamwasam took a good catch. Cameron Fatchen grabbed another soon after and then Hiran Lecamwasam took one just on drinks to have the Pirates 3/35. From there they cruised to 3/61 and we looked gone.
Cameron Fatchen then returned to the bowling crease and struck a double blow, both lbw with the ball starting to stay low. Elliot Opie was steaming in from the other end and hit off peg to make it 6/65. Suddenly we were only three wickets from victory as one of their batters had suffered a nasty finger dislocation while trying to take a catch off an Adam Hose straight drive.
Elliot grabbed two more quickly and then Fatch hit the pegs for his 5th wicket. Amazingly Prospect were all out for 73 and we had won by 51 runs. It was Cameron’s first five-wicket haul in the A Grade and incredibly his 46th wicket across all competitions for the club this season.
Day 2 saw us push for an outright win. Our batters had missed out the last three innings so we were hoping they could spend some valuable time in the middle. Henry Dall (24) and John Dalton put on 92 for the first wicket as we went about setting a target. Adam Hose came in and hit 37 in quick time while John effortlessly cruised to an unbeaten century. It was John’s 2nd century of the season and 3rd A Grade ton altogether. He now has over 600 runs for the season, and is sitting second on the competition aggregate. We declared at 1/166, meaning Prospect had 51 overs to make 218. We needed to take 10 wickets.
After two overs this was looking likely with Prospect reeling at 3/0. Daniel Worrall had picked up two in his first over and Cameron Fatchen got one next over. The Pirates dug in after that before a brilliant leg side stumping from James Seward off Hiran saw the score 4/25. Daniel Worrall came back into the attack and hit the stumps to make it 5/49 and an outright was on the cards. Unfortunately the rain came after that and we were forced from the field. We returned briefly but with a wet ball couldn’t take any more wickets and play was called off.
At Parkinson Oval the B Grade lost the toss and fielded first. An early run out and a wicket to Scott Aufderheide had the score 2/4 but Prospect dominated after that. A third wicket partnership of 162 set up the game and our bowlers struggled to make inroads as the wicket flattened out.
Michael Cappelluti came back for a second spell and turned the game, taking two wickets before tea and then two wickets straight after. 2/166 had become 6/170 and we were back in it. Cappa grabbed his 5th and it was 7/179. The last three wickets took a bit longer, Nick Palmer eventually picking up all three as the Pirates finished with 219. Simon Schwerdt elevated himself to opener in a desperate search for a hit and finished 10* – we were 0/13 at stumps.
Day 2 started poorly with an early wicket but Elliot Opie (30) and Sam Williams (26) took us without further trouble to 1/66. Then the carnage started… Sam Williams holed out to deep backward square and Opes edged to gully in the last over before lunch. After lunch Liam Scanlon and Lucas Froude came and went quickly and suddenly 1/66 had become 5/86. It was a long way back but Eddie Steele and Charlie Holmes pushed the score over 100 as we tried to regain our footing.
It wasn’t to be. That partnership was broken and the last four wickets fell over in disappointing fashion, including a couple of run outs. All out 125 so a 94 run loss. The B’s have had an excellent season and remain top of the ladder so I’m sure will put this result behind them.
At Broadview Oval in the C Grade we batted first and had to work hard on a difficult wicket and exceptionally slow outfield. Only two fours were hit for the entire day so runs were at a premium!
It was slow going in the first session and we were 3/56 after 37 overs at tea. Michael Davies battled for his 29 then after tea we had a string of handy partnerships as we tried to build a defendable total. Sean McCullum was excellent with 32 and had support from Euan Fletcher (17), Steve Tanti (10), Oliver Harms (18) and Eddy Greeves (12*) as we finished with 167.
On Day 2 the start was delayed due to some drizzling rain but when play started out bowlers took charge. Oliver Harms and Greg Tanti both took wickets in their opening spell and change bowlers Steve Tanti and James Cleggett also picked up one each when they came on. Prospect were 4/27 and we were in the box seat. Cleggs grabbed a second and then Eddy Greeves picked up one courtesy of a Sean McCullum stumping. Greg Tanti came back and trapped their No 7 lbw with the last ball before tea to make it 7/56 from 32 overs.
During the tea break their skipper tried to broker a deal to put outright points on the table which we accepted. It meant that they would declare at 7/56 giving us first innings points. We would then set them a target. We batted for 9 overs with Alex Chapman blasting 31 runs in quick time. Our 9 overs yielded 3/63 and we declared there. That left Prospect 37 overs to make 175 and for us to take 10 wickets.
We started well and had them 4/35 when the rain came and unfortunately washed out play. Greg Tanti and Oliver Harms took 2 wickets each. Unfortunately we lose both of them back to school cricket now but both have been impressive through the school holidays. So an important win for the C’s which lifts us into second position.
At Colonel Waite Oval the D Grade batted first on a very flat wicket. Prospect are undefeated on top in the D’s and had a good attack.
Jed Spence (21) and John Bliss put on 25 for the first wicket but once that partnership was broken the wickets fell steadily. We limped to 7/66 and were in danger of being bowled out for under a hundred. James du Preez and Tom MacKenzie had other ideas, putting on a brilliant 108 for the 8th wicket. James brought up his 50 before being dismissed for the first time this season. He now has a senior batting average of 254… not bad for an Under 16! T-Mac went on to make 72 which included four large sixes. Their partnership saved our bacon but more was to follow.
Nos 10 and 11 Daniel Subramaniam and Lochlan Roberts came together with the score 9/182 and put on an amazing 60 for the last wicket. Daniel contributed 3* playing the Josh Hazelwood role while Lochy Roberts took on the Marcus Stoinos role, blasting the ball all over the ground on his way to 53 (his first half century for the club). Our total of 242 looked unlikely a couple of hours before. We had a couple of overs to bowl before stumps and Lochy continued his golden day, picking up two wickets as Prospect slumped to 2/2 at the close of Day 1.
On Day 2 we bowled on a pitch that had been freshened by some light drizzle. James du Preez took 3 wickets in his opening spell to reduce Prospect to 5/20. Tom MacKenzie then picked up two wickets in two balls, the second courtesy of a sharp stumping to Brayden Frost (the hat-trick ball was a full toss that was hacked away). John Bliss picked up a wicket and the last two wickets went to Daniel Subramaniam, both from Frost stumpings. All out 85 so a strong win in the end. We made them follow on and the score was 2/73 when the rain ended play.
So an important win for the D’s in what is an extremely tight premiership race. We are sitting 3rd but the 4th, 5th and 6th ranked teams are all within a game of us.
At Marion Oval the LOA’s fielded first. They finished with 192 with our spinners the pick of the bowlers – Ryan Sparrow 4 wickets, Hamish Porter 2 wickets. We cruised to 1/100 from 17 overs with Nathan Woods and Tom Evans in fine form before rain stopped play. The match finished in a draw.