COLLENDINA started its 2020-21 campaign on a positive note with a 19-run victory over St Leonards in its season opener in the Bellarine Peninsula Cricket Association A1 competition.
The Cobras won the toss and elected to bat, but runs were hard to come by at St Leonards Lake Reserve, Collendina grinding its way to 7-150 from 40 overs.
The score was built off the hard work of Curtly Balshaw (33 runs off 90 balls) and Andrew Higgins (35 off 65), which allowed Robert Stonehouse (25 off 26) and skipper Nathan Walter (22 off 26) to get the scoreboard moving.
“When we got 150 we thought that was pretty good actually… it was pretty slow, the grass was really thick,” Walter said.
“He (Balshaw) just played that anchor role and gave myself and Andy Higgins a bit of freedom to play our shots a bit more… Rob (Stonehouse) got some key runs towards the end, too.”
Collendina made a strong start with the ball, striking in the second over. It looked in control for much of the day with the only threat to the six points being Andrew Spengler.
Spengler made a dashing 59 off 54 deliveries, but when he fell to make it 7-91, the Cobras breathed a sigh of relief.
Jye Hearps took 3-37, including the scalp of Spengler, while Jacob Gasior took 3-20.
St Leonards was all out for 131 in the 34th over.
Collendina will face a big challenge next week against Anglesea. It will assess Stonehouse, who hurt his hamstring, throughout the week. Walter expected him to be right for next week’s big clash.
In other round one action, Anglesea made short work of Barwon Heads, storming through its batting line-up. Joseph Lynch was in full flight, taking 4-11 off eight overs as the Seagulls were dismissed for just 49. Angelsea comfortably reeled in the total with eight wickets in hand.
There were some nervous moments for Jan Juc as it nearly failed to chase down Queenscliff’s 103. At 9-97 it was left to number 10 and 11 batsmen Josh Norman and Jacob Graham to hit the winning runs, which they did.
Barrabool set Ocean Grove 164 for victory, which proved more than enough; Ocean Grove dismissed for 112.