Crone rises, Stepien fires

Former Strathfieldsaye paceman Xavier Crone took the next step in his cricket development when he opened the bowling for the Victorian second XI in the Cricket Australia Futures League on Monday.

Crone took 2-67 off 13 overs against Western Australia (5-367) on a batsman-friendly pitch at Casey Fields on day one of the four-day game.

Xavier Crone opened the bowling for Victoria in the Futures League on Monday.

Xavier Crone opened the bowling for Victoria in the Futures League on Monday.

After taking 0-19 off three overs in his first spell, Crone clean bowled Nick Hobson for 56 and did the same to Jono Wells for 153.

Wells, who opened the batting, faced 191 balls and hit 20 fours and one six.

Crone continued his good start to the Melbourne Premier Cricket season when he took 2-38 off nine overs in Carlton’s 36-run win over Kingston Hawthorn on Saturday.

The big right-arm paceman was rested from Carlton’s round four win over Prahran on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Brayden Stepien was the best performed Bendigo cricketer in Premier Cricket on the weekend.

The former White Hills opening batsman smashed 135, including 11 fours and three sixes, for Carlton’s third XI on Saturday and was promoted to the second XI on Sunday where he made a quickfire 62 off 63 balls.

The left-hander will be White Hills’ marquee player in the opening round of the BDCA T20 competition next Tuesday.

Bendigo United teenager Jack Bouwmeester and Golden Square 15-year-old Zane Keighran made their debut for Carlton third XI over the weekend.

Bouwmeester took 1-6 off five overs on Saturday and backed up with another wicket in Sunday’s one-day match. Keighran played in Sunday’s win over Prahran and made a duck.

 Former Golden Square paceman Scott Woodman played in the Carlton second XI in both games. Woodman claimed 2-17 off seven overs on Saturday and 1-31 off six overs on Sunday.

Bendigo’s trio of players at Essendon had a mixed weekend.

Former Sandhurst spinner Liam Bowe took 1-57 in Essendon’s first XI victory over Prahran on Saturday.

Bowe backed up on Sunday with 2-20 to help the Bombers defeat Casey-South Melbourne.

Former Sandhurst keeper-batsman Isaac Conway made 13 not out in the second XI on Saturday and nine not out in the first XI on Sunday.

Bendigo teen James Ryan played in the Bombers’ second XI. He made scores of two and four and had bowling figures of 0-14 and 1-39.

Former Strathdale batsman Andrew Chalkley returned to form with 40 off 49 balls for Monash Tigers first XI in the club’s four-wicket loss to St Kilda on Sunday. Chalkey is expected to return to the Suns as their marquee player for the T20 competition.

 Former Bendigo batsman Sam Brewin made 11 and 0 in two games for Melbourne second XI over the weekend.

The former White Hills batsman smashed 135, including 11 fours and three sixes.