Third Grade Report vs Easts
Two new faces greeted the third graders on Saturday morning - Andrew Coleman and Anthony Sherman up for their first games in 3rd grade for the club (or maybe Pic has played once or twice before). A much shorter warm up lap (due to Brett Rosen's absence) was followed by a toss that was a formality - Gordon was batting whichever way the coin landed.
(Nick Dowsley during his 87)
After the loss of an early wicket, Justin Avendano and Nick Dowsley set about building a foundation and moved the score along to 41 before Avendano was dismissed. Harry Turner joined Dowsley at the crease and played a great dogged supporting role for Dowsley who continued his good form. The wicket was a little two paced, which made it difficult to drive, but Dowsley and Turner took the score to about 125 at tea. After tea, fresh from some very effective Ledgerwood stretching of his 'officed' hamstrings, Dowsley was feeling great and probably got a little carried away in his search for a 100 and was dismissed for 87, with the stags in a solid position at 3-145.
What then followed was another disappointing collapse, Turner fell for a well compiled 31 and soon Sherman and skipper Howitt followed and suddenly to score was 6-160. Dan Richtor (29) and Andrew Coleman (21) then combined effectively to add 38 for the seventh wicket but it wasn't until the final overs of the day that Gordon was back in a good position. Matt Todd, shocked at his demotion to number 11, proved his skipper wrong with some remarkable shots on his way to 44 not out off not many balls. The highlights were the numerous sixes over cover off the quicks. Todd's brilliant cameo took the score to a good 9/271 at the end of play.
(Only one player could play a shot like this. Toddy)
Despite the rain overnight, the wicket looked in good shape when we arrived at Trumper Park on day 2, with less grass than day 1. Nevertheless, that was no excuse for what happened in the first hour of play. Easts' openers simply came out and punished our bowlers from ball one. Anything slightly wide, full or short was sent to the boundary and we were in deep trouble with the score 0-100 after about 18 overs. Dowsley (2-28) was brought on and claimed both openers with fullish deliveries that were hit straight to fielders. Soon Todd (1-55) took a third wicket and Gordon were right back into the match. However, runs kept flowing at a steady rate until the tea break, putting Easts in a dominant position.
With Avendano (2-34) and Pat Effeney (1-37) claiming quick wickets after tea, Gordon's hopes were rekindled again. However, the vital final wickets proved hard to come by and it took a great run out by Effeney to get the 7th wicket when there were only 10 runs left to defend, which, unfortunately, was too few.
(The skipper trying to break through on day 2)
Nevertheless, there was much to learn from this result. We need to develop more consistency in our bowling, and remove that '4' ball that reared its head far too often on Saturday and, as the skipper emphasised after the game, be more anticipatory in the field to gain that extra split second that would have got us quite a few run-outs.