EMU Creek's Emu Valley Cricket Association premiership defence is off to a strong start after beating Mandurang in the grand final rematch on Saturday.
The Emus successfully chased down Mandurang's challenging 6-208 off 40 overs at J.G. Edwards Oval.
Mandurang's 208 was built around scores from Michael Healy (49), Ben Rodda (40 n.o.), captain Warrick Behrens (31), Cain Ladiges (25) and opener Matt Giri (31).
The best partnership of the innings was the 73 Rodda and Healy put on for the fifth wicket.
Captain Daniel Chamberlain picked up 2-31 for the Emus, while Justin Hancock took 2-51, but was expensive, with his 51 runs coming off just five overs.
The Emus were under pressure early in their chase at 2-27, and later 3-59.
However, knocks from Tim Hobbs (65) - who picked up from where he left off in last season's grand final - Shane Hamilton (32), Simon Marwood (31) and Hancock (17) set the Emus on the path to victory.
Ladiges (2-21), Behrens (2-35) and Giri (2-27) took two wickets apiece for the Rangas.
* United prevailed by 11 runs in a high-scoring contest against West Bendigo.
There were 563 runs scored in the clash. Normally, West Bendigo's 7-276 would be enough to win a one-day game, but not on Saturday.
The Redbacks fell short of United's 8-287.
Opener Tim Elliott (84) and captain Forbes Klemm (54) both made half-centuries for the Tigers at Ken Wust Oval.
Josh Filo added 46 for the Tigers, while Josh White (38) and keeper-batsman Andrew Collins (36) kept the runs flowing in the middle order.
Captain Dion Prange was the Redbacks' leading bowler with his 3-47 off eight overs.
Set a difficult chase of 288 to win, West Bendigo gave it a good crack with its reply of 7-276.
New coach Matt Dwyer (73), who opened the batting, and Ken Bell (78) led the run-chase as they combined for 151 runs.
Fraser Cole (3-37) snared three wickets for the Tigers, including the big scalp of Dwyer, which left the Redbacks 3-136.
* Golden Gully started its campaign with a 60-run victory over Maiden Gully.
The Cobras' decision to win the toss and bowl paid dividends as they dismissed Maiden Gully for 143 in 39.4 overs.
Shaun O'Shea (4-30) and Travis Eckardt (3-22) combined for 7-52 off 15.4 overs for the Cobras.
The Maiden Gully top-order failed to fire. The side lost its first six wickets with the score on 1, 6, 14, 23, 39 and 40.
No.8 Brett Haw did his best to rescue the Maiden Gully innings.
Haw scored 53 and received solid support late in the innings from Marc Brownlee (16) and Ben Ross (15).
Golden Gully passed its target four wickets down, before going on to amass 6-203.
Captain Brendon Lummis led the successful run-chase with a knock of 64, while opener Rick Johnson helped lay the foundation with his 43.
Lummis and Johnson put on 72 for the third wicket after the Cobras had been 2-36.
Opening bowler Shane Rabbitt (3-31) was the only multiple wicket-taker for Maiden Gully.
* Axe Creek proved too good for Spring Gully at Champions IGA Oval.
Spring Gully could muster just 106 in 35.1 overs batting first. Only four Crows made double figures, with opener Scott Gray (18) and Jackson Adams (18) top-scoring.
Spring Gully had been 6-91, before losing its last four wickets for just 15 runs.
Daniel Saaghy (3-13), Jamie Morgan (2-11), Ash Dixon (2-14) and Brayden Oogjes (2-24) led a strong bowling performance from the Cowboys.
Axe Creek cruised past its target for the loss of three wickets and finished at 7-141 off its 40 overs.
Captain Travis Nolan's unbeaten 43 was Axe Creek's highest score.
Opener Mark Smith and Dixon both made 24.
Danny Tyler took 2-15 off four overs for Spring Gully.
* Marong downed Sedgwick by 18 runs at Marong Links Oval.
After being sent into bat, the Panthers compiled 9-165.
There were plenty of starts in the innings, but no players made more than 27.
Richard Murphy (27), Jeremy Ross (27) and opener Thomas Huf (26) were the best of the Marong batsmen.
The Panthers had been under pressure during their innings at 4-50, with their two leading run-scorers from last season, Scott Ross (3) and Zach Samuel (0), both dismissed cheaply.
Dave Horan (3-36) was the Rams' leading wicket-taker, while openers Jordan Knight (1-14) and Scott McKenzie (2-9), who both bowled eight overs, were economical.
Marong's 9-165 proved a winning score after Sedgwick was held to 7-147 in its chase.
The Rams were on the backfoot early at 2-18.
However, McKenzie and Brock Watts batted the Rams into a strong position.
They put on 84 for the third wicket, before the momentum swung back the Panthers way.
McKenzie (56) and Watts (27) were dismissed within one run of each other as the Rams fell from 2-102 to 4-103.
The Rams batted their 40 overs, but fell 18 runs short.
Duane Anderson (3-33) and Jayden Laubsch (2-31) were the multiple wicket-takers for the Panthers.
Round 2 - October 12-19: Maiden Gully v Spring Gully; Mandurang v Sedgwick; Emu Creek v Axe Creek; Golden Gully v United; Marong v West Bendigo.