Roos back in the race
Monday, 25th January, 2016
By Patrick Reincke
South have made a big move towards playing finals cricket this season by defeating North in a tight game on Saturday.
The windy conditions didn’t stop a challenging match from being played at Alma Oval with both sides struggling to get substantial runs on the board.
The return of Codie Howard boosted the North bowling attack but when he was dismissed for just three during the run chase, the blue and whites lost a quality run scorer and paid the price.
For South, openers Sheldon Hall and Ian Grant got things underway nicely with some good runs.
After getting a hat-trick last week, Kieran McEvoy kept the wickets coming when he broke the opening partnership from a Hall edge to the waiting gloves of Anthony Tidball.
Grant continued to grind away while Mani Singh came and went for naught, until Nash Mitchell finally bowled him for 19.
The middle order struggled to stay at the crease with Kumar, Page, Campbell and Lihou all gone without passing three runs.
Andrew Suckling provided a late spark for the Roos with his 26 off of 21 taking the margin towards 100.
It was an all-round bowling performance from North with five bowlers taking two wickets each.
Howard was the most economical, giving only 12 runs away from his eight overs.
Tobias Hack picked up the big wickets of Laurence Hebbard and Matt Lihou while Chase Johnson claimed Page and Kumar clean bowled.
With South all out for 93, North looked very likely to come away with the win.
The loss of Howard and Cohen Sweet early on left the team at 2/17 but that didn’t faze them.
Mick Moritz and Tobias Hack started to find the gaps and tick over the run tally. At 2/50, North were angling in on the 94 target for victory.
However, Stephen Chestnut threw a spanner into the works when he dismissed Moritz and Hack in an inspired spell.
Chase Johnson and Jordan Vella then fired back to take the total to 81 and have the game all but in their hands.
But once again, the tables turned with Johnson (19) run out, Vella (15) caught and the arriving Matthew Garrick (0) caught in quick succession.
Alex Page claimed Vella and Garrick in a destructive over which now saw Anthony Tidball and Lachlan Harvey at the crease.
Tidball faced eight dot balls before Hebbard hit his stumps to send him off with a duck and then took down Harvey in his following over.
Standing at 9/90 with one wicket in hand, needing three for the draw and four for the win, McEvoy got a single to make it 91.
It was getting too close for comfort when Hebbard stepped up to bowl his final over.
A dot ball first up was followed by an attack on the stumps which McEvoy couldn’t stop from hitting his pads. LBW was given and South stood victorious with their second win of the season and finals cricket a very big possibility.
The South B-Grade also enjoyed a win, making it the first time in a long time that both grades won on the same day.