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One title, three bow out, one remains in the hunt for a premiership

Well, all good things must come to an end eventually. Sadly for three Gordon sides, they'll probably feel as though that end came a week too early. First, second and fifth grades, who were fantastic all year and earned their semi final spots, will think that they left the competition a week early. 

They are all hard games at this stage of the season though, and there has to be losers as well as winners. All three teams who left the finals race this year performed with great spirit and camaraderie. And from the whole club, I'd like to pass on a big congratulations to our women's first grade side, who managed a premiership. Well done to all involved!

Matt Keever's helps take 4th Grade into the Grand Final.

Let's spill the details of what went on over the weekend.

First Grade

At 3/23, and with James Kennedy with his tail up and Bankstown in trouble having been sent in, it was looking terrific for the Stags.

From there, not a lot went right in the field.

The bowlers toiled away, bowling aggressively, and then tightly, but just couldn't take a trick. Catches went down, half chances were spilled. First grade will feel as though they didn't back up in the field as well as they could have, and it didn't help that Cam Eccles, Ash Doolan and Elliott Richtor all copped blows.

JK led the way with the ball with 3 early wickets.
Matt Junk and Josh Doyle both bowled with great control, while James Kennedy was the standout all day, continuing to create chances with the old ball.
But the day just kept getting away from the Stags, with Mitch Brown playing a very classy knock for 161, being supported by Kerrod White and Nathan McAndrew.

At 5-290 odd and day 1 called for light and rain, it was a matter of batting out the next day on a good Chatswood deck.

After piling on a few more in the morning, Bankstown sent the Stags in. 

Josh Doyle picks up his first 1st Grade wicket and Ash Doolan shows some resistance with the bat.
No one was ever quite able to patch together an innings of substance. There were a lot of starts, with all of the top 6 finishing in double figures. But no one went on to be the glue for the innings, with Ash Doolan the top scorer with 35.

Bankstown fought well, and battled through a tough early period. They took their chances better than the Stags, and that was the difference between a grand final for our men and an early bath.

Well done to Steve Colley and the team for a great year. The best thing is this team has great spirit, and plenty of the blokes should be around next year to repeat the dose, and hopefully go a couple better. We know you have it in you.

Commiserations on a tough loss, but great effort all year.

Gordon 155 (Ash Doolan 35) def by Bankstown 9/317dec (James Kennedy 6/93)

Second Grade

Sent in at Mark Taylor, the 2s were always going to be up against it to put on a good score. 

With play not starting on time due to rain over the previous weeks, there would inevitably be a bit in the deck for the seamers.

But at 3/109, and with Max Papworth on 49 after valuable runs from Cam New, it was looking alright for Gordon.

Max played exceptional for his 49.
There wasn't much alright after that, however, as the innings crumbled, with some resistance shown by Corbin Edgar and Reagan Klemt. 

All out for 139 wasn't what the captain had in mind after a promising start. But with a good bowling attack at his disposal, there was still belief.

NDs went about their work methodically after losing a wicket to Nick Miller with the score on zilch, and slowly edged their way to the target.

It would be Reagan Klemt who'd bring the game back within reach for the Stags, going bang bang to give everyone hope.

3/46. Game in the balance.

From there, a couple of partnerships ensued, but with the score at 6/96, then 7/114, and 8/128, it was still possible.

Reagan dominated with the ball with great support from Scott and Skilly.
That would be the end of Gordon's wicket taking, though, NDs tracking the score down 8 down. 

A great, fighting effort from the Stags, but not enough to earn them a grand final. Well done to Max and the team.

Gordon 139 (Max Papworth 49) def by Northern District (Reagan Klemt 4/25, Scott O'Brien 2/39)

Fourth Grade

Yes, we get to talk about fourth grade now. What a game!

To say that some of the wickets in the lower grade fixtures this week were difficult might be the ultimate understatement. Not many scores in excess of 100 were registered.

Charlie Booth traps a batsman on the crease.
So it was in this game, with 100 probably a good score at Asquith.

All the batsmen battled hard, with Liam McElduff very impressive in difficult conditions. 

24 mightn't sound like a lot, but it was worth plenty in these conditions. 

Liam McElduff and Matt Wright batted with class and patience.
Wickets fell consistently, but with the outfield slow and the going difficult, the Stags managed to last 73 overs, getting to 104. A good score, so it would prove. As they say, never judge a wicket until both sides have batted. 

Judge away. All out for 41 from 32.5 overs. 

Matt Keevers was outstanding, as was Charlie Booth. Matt captured 4/7 off 11 overs, while Boothy had 3/7 off nearly 8 overs.

Boothy in action!
Sam Watts was 2/11 off 6 overs. Almost 2 an over Sam! Pick it up!

Gordon were made to bat again, but with the score on 86 after 68 overs the game was called, and the Stags were in the grand final. Well done boys - keep it up next week.

Matt Keever's hitting the perfect line and length.
Gordon 104 (Liam McElduff 24) and 8/86 (Mitch Kleem 21) def Northern District 41 (Matt Keevers 4/7, Charlie Booth 3/7, Sam Watts 2/11)

Fifth Grade

Well well well... Sadly for our all-conquering fifth grade side, not a lot went right. The conditions were against them, sent in on a damp Tunks Park wicket.

25 all out testifies to a tough pitch but also some poor decision making.

Really though, there's not much to be said other than the Randwick Petersham bowlers put the ball in the right areas, and the Stags couldn't match it.

The game gone, Randy Petes managed to get to 115 before sending the Stags back in. Once again the batsmen struggled, managing 103.

That was chased down, and the fifth graders' dream was crushed.

Tough luck lads. It was a great season, and you'll be in a very good spot next year.

Gordon 25 and 104 (Nick Andrea 23, Lachie Stewart 21) def by Randwick Petersham 114 (Dave Monaghan 3/23, Pat Rice, Nick Prell, Dave Burk 2 wickets each) and 0/15


Let's finish with... a premiership if you don't mind! 

Aaron Crofts and his team have been in special form all season, producing fantastic performance after fantastic performance.

Skipper Aaron Crofts leads the way with the ball.
Never a side to disappoint, they produced more of the same in the final game of the year. 
Possibly the strongest Colts side I've seen since being involved with the club, it was a terrific effort from everyone who played in this side this year.

At 0/36 on a Killara wicket that does a bit early on, Penrith must have been feeling pretty good. 

But Colts has terrific bowling depth, and they banded together to snag wicket after wicket. Everyone chipped in, with Aaron Crofts once again the middle order destroyer picking up 3.

Manus bowled superb, improving out of sight this year.
Set 87 to win, Colts set about the chase with plenty of confidence. Brady Morrison and Andrew Harvey played their shots, and Oli Williams and Rahul Krishna kept up the momentum when they were called to the crease. 

Brady and Andrew set up the run chase beautifully.
Rahul and Manus saw us over the line for the title. The game ebbed along, Matt Kean clubbing a few, before the fate was accepted.
Gordon are champions, and deservedly so, of the Metropolitan Cup.

Well done Aaron and team. A win to savour from a team deserving of a championship.

A hearty congratulations from everyone at the club for what you've achieved this season.

Gordon 5/107 (Andrew Harvey 30, Brady Morrison 20) def Penrith 87 (Aaron Crofts 3/7, Nick Dellis 2/25)

Pat Effeney


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