GEELONG City delivered a telling performance with the ball to set up an emphatic victory over St Peters in the Geelong Cricket Association Division 2 firsts competition.
The Sharks won the toss and sent the Saints into bat, but skipper Jack Driver said the decision was not based on a spicy wicket but the threat of rain later in the day and a desire to chase a total.
The decision proved a master stroke as the Geelong City bowlers had a day out.
John Collins was unstoppable, taking 6-16 off his 10 overs while Byron Taylor took 3-12, St Peters bundled out for 47.
In response, the Sharks only needed 73 balls to claim victory, doing so with a sense of urgency given rain was on its way.
Driver said it was a great result and one of those days where it all fell into place.
“It was a great bowling display, it was unbelievable. At the start of the day I was thinking if we could keep them to 180 given the outfield and the wicket.
“There was nothing wrong with the wicket, but it was good conditions for swing bowling.
“The batters went about it as usual… the wicket was good, so we went about it as normal and beat the rain by about half an hour.”
Geelong City sits fourth on the ladder, opening up a one-game buffer following other round 6 results. Driver was pleased with the platform his team had built.
“If we can win the next two (against Modewarre and Bell Park) heading into Christmas and be 5-3, you can’t complain with that; it’ll hold us in good stead.”
In other matches, Torquay got the job done against Bell Park by four wickets. The Tigers dismissed the Dragons for 120, Terry Hill (3-19) the pick of the bowlers. Torquay then worked its way to the total, well-guided by an important 28-run seventh-wicket partnership.
Marshall’s bowlers tore through Modewarre, dismissing it for 92. Brad Greenwood and Liam Vaughan did the damage, taking 4-15 and 4-6 respectively. The Bears then chased down the total with the loss of just one wicket.
Bell Post Hill remains on top of the ladder, defeating Alexander Thomson by six wickets. The bowling of Lachlan Horan (5-13) set up the comfortable run chase.
SOUTH Barwon and Lara were the biggest beneficiaries of the Geelong Cricket Association’s Division 1 firsts’ double-header weekend, winning both of its matches.
The weekend saw round 6 and 7 in the GCA1 and GCA3 given they are 10-team competitions as opposed to eight.
While a number of matches were rain-affected, with some being decided with a readjusted target, it was a weekend that delivered some impressive performances.
Grovedale produced a commanding performance against Highton to remain in touch with the top four.
The Tigers, led by Kane Pozman (87 runs), posted 6-201, but it was its display with the ball that proved most eye-catching.
The Heat worked their way to 2-26, but then proceeded to lose an astonishing 8-14. Grovedale dismissed Highton for just 40 runs as Sam Coutts took 5-12 and Mitchell Ford joined the party with 3-5.
North Geelong’s Sam Hall rescued his side with a brilliant century. The Magpies were sent into bat by Murgheboluc and slumped to 3-30 before Hall (101) and Layton McCann (65) put on 153 to help North Geelong to 7-208. Murgheboluc fell 76 runs short after completing its 45 overs, leaving North Geelong still on top of the GCA1 ladder.
Harry Hauenstein took 3-26 and made an unbeaten 63 against Leopold to help South Barwon claim a two-wicket victory.
Cricket fans were unfortunately denied a top-of-the-table clash, as North Geelong and Newtown & Chilwell’s encounter on Saturday was not completed due to rain.
ROUND 7 of the Bellarine Peninsula Cricket Association A1 competition was washed out as rain swept the region in the latter stages of the afternoon.
All four matches saw the points split after 40 overs were played in each of the first innings, but no side managed more than 10 overs in the second dig.
These matches will stand and will not be replayed despite the BPCA having spare weeks in the fixture.
BPCA president Ian Caldwell said given that matches got under way, a draw would be the official result, detailing that the spare weeks would be used only if matches were abandoned before the game began.
As a result, there is no change to the ladder, which sees Anglesea remain a game clear on top of the table with one round of play to go before the Christmas break.
Barrabool sits in second place, a game clear of third. Jan Juc and Queenscliff round out the top four, sitting at three wins and two losses.
Ocean Grove and Collendina sit a game outside the top four while St Leonards is currently seventh with just the one win for the year and Barwon Heads is still seeking its first victory of 2020/21.