Heavy win books finals spot
Monday, 18th February, 2019
By Tyler Hannigan
Central crushed West on Saturday by 149 runs to book their finals spot in round 14 of the Demo Club A Grade cricket competition.
Starting at the unusually early time of 8:30am at the Alma Oval and playing just 35 overs a side due to the unavailability of the Jubilee Oval, Central batted first and lost Riley Elvery (5) within the first three overs.
Central’s musical chairs batting order continued with Jarred Paull coming in to join Adam Rhodes, who opened the batting. The pair consolidated and then counter-attacked, adding 72 runs in just 16 overs before Matt Adams removed Rhodes for 30 off 41 balls.
Josh Joliffe, who was a late replacement for Tristen Smith, showed his B Grade century a couple of weeks ago was no fluke as he and Paull dispatched the West bowling attack to all parts of the Alma in an 89-run partnership.
Paull’s innings of 74 was the second time he’s passed 50 this season and included eight fours. He now has 296 A Grade runs at an average of 42.29 and sits second with North’s Codie Howard on the run scoring list.
Joliffe fell shortly after for a well-made 46 off 36 balls and while Central debutant Patrick Jenkinson and Scott Mateer both failed to trouble the scorers, Luke Neal’s 16 not out moved Central to six for 202 at the end of their 35 overs.
Clint Pearce and Max Everuss each took two wickets while Austin Ferguson and Matt Adams chipped in with one apiece. All the West bowlers copped some stick with Everuss the only one to go at fewer than five runs per over.
Central were also helped by the West bowlers who allowed 17 wides and two no balls.
Central captain Dave O’Mally struck early, removing Tom Burke for naught and while Lachlan Kaye (11) struck a couple of nice boundaries, he became O’Mally’ second victim not long after.
From there it was a quick procession of wickets with Everuss (6), Jordan Meehan (8), Adams (0) and Austin Ferguson (0) offering little resistance.
Pearce would top score with 14 off 26 deliveries before he was sent packing by Damon Pettitt and the West tail folded quickly to be all out for just 53 off 23.2 overs.
O’Mally, Neal and Pettitt all claimed two wickets apiece while Mateer, Jenkinson and Elvery also got in on the action with one each as Central shared the ball around using eight bowlers in total.
The loss consigns West to their first A Grade wooden spoon in at least two decades. They’re very much in a rebuilding stage having been an incredibly strong team throughout the 2000’s and early 2010’s.
Central will now take on South twice over the next two weeks - firstly in round 15 and then again in the semi-final. Next week won’t impact the ladder but the Magpies will be hoping to pick up their first win over the Roos this season to take some confidence into the finals.
Central 6 for 202 (J. Paull 74, J. Joliffe 46, A. Rhodes 30; M. Everuss 2-28) def West 53 (D. Pettitt 2-2, L. Neal 2-4, D. O’Mally 2-9) by 149 runs