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Magpies tough

Saturday, 12th November, 2016

North’s Jordan Vella, shown pushing the ball firmly down the ground against West, is likely to return to the Bulldogs team today, strengthening their bowling and batting. PICTURE: Tyler Hannigan North’s Jordan Vella, shown pushing the ball firmly down the ground against West, is likely to return to the Bulldogs team today, strengthening their bowling and batting. PICTURE: Tyler Hannigan

By Tyler Hannigan

Both North and Central sides recovered from batting collapses to win last weekend and they face each other today at the Alma Oval. 

North were 4-20 before skipper Tobias Hack played a masterful knock of 121* to lead them to a convincing 85-run win against South.

Wickets were shared between Ben Victory, Bailey Shepherd and Kieren McEvoy who all took two each. 

North’s batting again rests firmly on the shoulders of Hack but he’ll need support and the expected inclusion of Codie Howard will be a massive advantage. Howard brings experience and gives the North team much needed batting depth.

The bowling attack isn’t likely to change much and the consistent seam bowling of Victory proved tough to score against last week on a pitch that suits his style.

North could use a genuine pace bowler to give their attack a spearhead to compliment their medium pacers. Shane Dalby or Chase Johnson comes to mind. 

All-rounder Jordan Vella is also likely to return after missing last weekend’s game.

Central were in even greater trouble last weekend, falling to 7-17 before keeper Paul Gauci’s counterattacking 59 off 40 balls gave them a fighting chance which their bowlers took, bowling West out for 92 for a 3-run victory.

John Carrett starred with the ball for the Magpies taking 5-12 off his eight overs while Jarred Paull and Adam Rhodes were very economical in their spells.

Despite getting away with the win, Central will know that another collapse like that isn’t acceptable and will be looking for a better effort from their top order.

The normally reliable Cameron Wells fell for just 6 runs but he rarely misses out twice in a row.

The Magpies will also be looking for more output from youngster Jake Trengove who has just 28 runs from his four innings so far this season, having generally batted in the top/middle order.

David O’Mally’s last game against North saw him take the great figures of 2-0 off just two overs. He was solid last week against West where he took 1-23 off seven overs but he hasn’t quite produced the form so far that saw him as the competition’s leading wicket taker last season. 

The previous game between these two sides, although it was a T20, saw Central rack up 8-150 off their 20 overs before bowling North out for just 76. Wells scored 22, Scott Mateer scored 32, Paull finished with 29 and another 3 players got starts in a well-rounded batting display, something that the Magpies will hope for today. 

The young Bulldogs will need their captain to again lead from the front if they are to win today and Hack will want to cash in while he’s in form so expect him to go on with it if he gets a start.

Central look to have too much depth for North today and as was shown last week, they have the ability to win in any situation.

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