BENDIGO and Golden Square will contest the Bendigo District Cricket Association’s first one-day final on Australia Day.
Saturday’s washed out games ensured both the Goers and Square held on to their positions at the top of the one-day ladder to book their berths in the inaugural final at the QEO.
Only two of the four scheduled one-day rounds this season were competed, with Bendigo, Golden Square and Sandhurst the only three teams not to lose a match in the shortened format.
However, the net run-rates of Bendigo (+0.83) and Golden Square (+0.36) were superior to Sandhurst (+0.29).
After last week’s one-day matches were abandoned due to extreme heat, seven days later it was rain that resulted in all five first XI games finishing as frustrating washed out draws.
The only game that featured a team starting a run-chase was the match between Huntly-North Epsom and White Hills.
Yet even that was just a brief two over innings for Huntly-North Epsom, which was 0-15 chasing the Demons’ 6-191 before rain halted play at Huntly.
The brief innings was star Power recruit Russell De Groot’s first of the season following his delayed start due to a navicular stress fracture in his foot.
Among the three balls De Groot (9 n.o.) faced was a pull shot six off Corey Dickins (0-6), while earlier Gavin Bowles hit one six in his top score of 52 for White Hills as he ticked over the 300-run mark (315).
Having one stage been 3-100, the Demons lost three quick wickets to slip to 6-109, before Ollie Geary (45 n.o.) and Rhys Irwin (28 n.o.) ended the innings with an unbroken partnership of 82.
Brett Elvey (3-31 off 9) was the best of the bowlers for the Power, while Cory Tanner’s 2-34 included the dismissal of Bowles, who was stumped by Brodie McRae.
• Golden Square was under pressure with the bat before rain forced an end to its top-of-the-ladder clash against Strathdale-Maristians at Bell Oval.
The game ended with Golden Square 7-104 in the 34th over in an innings where only young gun Zane Keighran (37) had got past 20.
Dylan Bailie (2-14 off 7) and Sam Johnston (2-22 off 6) picked up two wickets apiece for the Suns, who are one point clear of Square in top spot after nine rounds.
• Sandhurst didn’t get the opportunity to defend its 7-229 against Strathfieldsaye at Tannery Lane after rain ended their contest between innings.
After winning the toss and batting, the Dragons’ innings was teetering at 4-55.
However, a 112-run stand for the fifth wicket between Sandhurst’s two leaders – captain Craig Howard and coach Taylor Beard – gave the ascendancy back to the Dragons.
Howard compiled 63 with three fours and two sixes, while Beard struck five boundaries and one six in his 48.
The innings also included another entertaining cameo from the hard-hitting Ash Gray, who clubbed 36 off 22, which included three sixes.
Cory Devanny made a welcome return to the Jets’ line-up with 2-45 off nine overs. Among his dismissals was Howard, who was caught by Pat Felmingham.
Captain Ben Devanny (2-28 off 9) and Michael Curtis (2-58 off 9) also picked up two wickets for the Jets.
• Bendgo’s Alex Pearson produced a fine bowling performance in the Goers’ draw with Bendigo United at North Bendigo.
Pearson bagged 3-14 off nine overs in the Redbacks’ tally of 138 after they were sent in.
Pearson dismissed both Harry Donegan (0) and Tyson Templeton (0) early to have figures of 2-2 after his first two overs.
Of the 54 balls Pearson – who constantly beat the bat – bowled, the Redbacks scored off just nine of them.
Spinner Tom Hart continued his consistent season for the Goers with 3-32 off seven overs to take his tally of wickets to 18.
Captain Leigh McDermott’s 37 was the top score for the Redbacks, whose last four wickets fell for 15 runs.
The game had been reduced to 43 overs a side after a 20-minute rain delay during Bendigo United’s innings, but the Goers’ chase never began due to more rain.
• The crucial contest between fifth and sixth ended with Kangaroo Flat 6-179 off 43 overs at home against Eaglehawk.
There were plenty of starts in the Roos’ innings, with Nathan Stubbings (21), Jake Klemm (20), Dylan Gibson (33), Jamie Dass (26) and captain Brent Hamblin (32 n.o.) – who is now averaging 63.0 – all scoring between 20 and 33.
Cam McGlashan (2-21 off 7) and Todd Brown (2-31 off 8) were both multiple wicket-takers for the Hawks, while paceman Richard Tibbett had an off day, conceding 56 runs off seven overs, which included nine wides.
With the drawn game, it keeps intact Eaglehawk’s unbeaten record against Kangaroo Flat that stretches back eight games to 2011-12.
Strathdale – 40
Golden Square – 39
Bendigo – 36
Sandhurst – 33
Eaglehawk – 27
Kangaroo Flat – 24
White Hills – 21
Huntly-North Epsom – 18
Strathfieldsaye – 18
Bendigo United – 12
Round 10, January 20-21:
Eaglehawk v Bendigo
Golden Square v Huntly-
Kangaroo Flat v
Sandhurst v Bendigo
White Hills v Strathdale