IT was a day of centuries in Saturday’s start to the final round of the Emu Valley Cricket Association as four players scored hundreds.
Ross Brown’s 127 helped put Axe Creek in with a chance of causing one of the upsets of the season against top side United.
The Cowboys have lost their past six games, but their batting fired against the top-of-the-ladder Tigers as they blasted 361.
The cornerstone of the Cowboys’ score was a 137-run partnership for the second wicket between Brown and Travis Nolan (50).
The Cowboys had eight of their batsmen score at least 19.
With his 127, Brown is now Axe Creek’s leading run-scorer this season with 340.
Josh Filo’s good form with the ball continued for United as he took 5-64 off 18 overs, while the wily Rod Smyth picked up 3-74.
For the first time this season, Alexander Collins (0-79) went wicketless.
● Emu Creek’s Brad Rowe and Shaun Cattanach both scored centuries and put on more than 200 for the second wicket against Spring Gully in the Emus’ total of 5-376.
After losing captain Daniel Chamberlain (7) with the score on 19, Rowe (124) and Cattanach (103) then dominated the Spring Gully bowlers with a 219-run stand.
The partnership came to an end when Rowe was caught by Steven Reilly off Jarrod Quirk (2-123).
The innings later ended with an unbroken stand of 77 for the sixth wicket between the in-form Shane Hamilton (53 n.o.) and Lucas Ruiden (25 n.o.).
● Sedgwick’s Scott McKenzie’s consistent season continued as he scored 101 of the Rams’ 343 runs against Golden Gully.
Also batting well for the Rams were opener Brock Watts (57), captain Dustin Elliott (48) and Adam Sonnet (42).
Having announced his short-lived retirement at the end of last season, McKenzie has now scored 433 runs and taken 15 wickets – not bad for a veteran who had planned to take up umpiring this summer.
The Cobras’ Shaun O’Shea bowled 25 overs and took 3-117, including the dismissal of McKenzie, who was caught by Darren De Marchi with the score on 248.
● Marong restricted Maiden Gully to 175 as the Panthers kept the pressure on all day with their tight bowling.
Rob Brown (39 n.o.) and Robert Binks (36) were the best of the batsmen for Maiden Gully, which had all its top six batsmen make double figures.
The standout bowler for the Panthers was Nick Ede.
Ede, the seventh bowler used, bowled eight overs and finished with the fine figures of 4-12.
Also having an economical day with the ball was Duane Anderson, who took 2-30 off 16 overs.
● Mandurang scored 261 against West Bendigo, which went to stumps at 0-24.
Michael Healy (57) and Leigh Haw (50) both made half-centuries for the Rangas, while opener Cain Ladiges (42) and Geoff Thompson (40) also contributed.
Travis O’Çonnell (4-31) and Dion Prange (3-62) took seven wickets between them for the Redbacks.
O’Çonnell also claimed two catches to have an involvement in six of the dismissals.
● Meanwhile, the semi-finals of the Bash For Cash will be played tomorrow night from 5.30pm:
West Bendigo v Marong at Maiden Gully.
Golden Gully v Spring Gully at Marong.