READ MORE - Weekend BDCA and EVCA teams
WHITE HILLS v STRATHDALE-MARISTIANS
12.30pm Saturday at Scott Street.
The Bendigo District Cricket Association season hits the 12-round mark on Saturday and Strathdale-Maristians is still to suffer a loss.
The fifth-placed White Hills on its home deck at Scott Street gets the next opportunity at becoming the first team to inflict a loss on the ladder-leaders.
The Demons will head into the clash on the back of what club stalwart Gavin Bowles rated their "best all-round game of the season" in last week's 90-run win over Strathfieldsaye when they dominated the Jets with both bat and ball.
The Demons boast two of the top three leading wicket-takers in the competition in Rhys Irwin (19) and spinner Linc Jacobs (18), but the whole White Hills' attack will be put to the test by the might of the Suns' batting line-up that is still to be bowled out this season and is the only team with five players who have at least one score of 50-plus - Jack Neylon (4), Grant Waldron (3), Cameron Taylor (2), James Vlaeminck (1) and Sam Johnston (1).
Last time: Strathdale-Maristians 3-161 def White Hills 7-158.
Since 2000: Strathdale-Maristians 20; White Hills 4; Tied 1.
White Hills - Mitch Winter-Irving (c), Caleb Barras, Tyrone Muir, Tom Dunham, Linc Jacobs, Gavin Bowles, Jayden Sheean, Rhys Irwin, Ollie Geary, Nicholas Wharton, Nicholas Wallace.
Strathdale-Maristians - Ben DeAraugo (c), Cameron Taylor, Grant Waldron, Ryan Haythorpe, Linton Jacobs, Jack Neylon, Jacob DeAraugo, Sam Johnston, Daniel Clohesy, Chris Sole, James Vlaeminck.
SANDHURST v STRATHFIELDSAYE
12.30pm Saturday at Weeroona Oval.
The Jets are still inside the top four, but their buffer is now just three points following last week's heavy defeat to White Hills.
The Jets will need a big turnaround with the bat after getting just a combined 20 runs from their top four run-scorers - Nayana Fernando (10), Pat Felmingham (1), Callum McCarty (9) and Mitch Cheesman (0) - last week, but a major positive was the return to form of skipper Ben Devanny (67 n.o.) after a lean season with the willow.
Conversely, Sandhurst heads into the clash off the back of its best batting performance of the season in a commanding win over Bendigo United and now has three players - skipper Joel Murphy, Dylan Gibson and Anthony McMahon - who have made centuries this season.
If the Dragons can win this at home they could be back within a game-and-a-half of the top four and their finals aspirations will have a pulse.
Last time: Strathfieldsaye 5-168 def Sandhurst 9-167.
Since 2000: Strathfieldsaye 16; Sandhurst 12.
Sandhurst - Joel Murphy (c), Nathan Walsh, Shane Robinson, Dylan Gibson, Will Keck, Alec Robson, Anthony McMahon, Jasper Langley, Braydon Vaz, Reilley Porter, Will Gadsden.
Strathfieldsaye - Ben Devanny (c), Stuart Payne, Pat Felmingham, Jack Stubbs, Jed Rodda, Callum McCarty, Nayana Fernando, Mitch Cheesman, Darcy Hunter, Zoltan Smyth, Savith Priyan.
GOLDEN SQUARE v BENDIGO UNITED
12.30pm Saturday at Wade Street.
Two rebuilding teams that have just five wins between them, both of whom are coming off thrashings last weekend.
Golden Square was skittled for just 81 by Kangaroo Flat, while Bendigo United had been 8-48 against Sandhurst before the last two wickets added 88.
Last week's 124-run loss to Sandhurst was a step backwards for the Redbacks after they had won their previous two games, while the gap between the Bulldogs' best and worst is shown that they are the team that has been both bowled out for the lowest score this season (last week), but also have come the closest to beating Strathdale-Maristians (lost by one wicket in round five).
After he took 6-10 against Bendigo United earlier in the season, how will the Redbacks handle Golden Square all-rounder Scott Trollope this time?
Last time: Golden Square 6-189 def Bendigo United 114.
Since 2000: Bendigo United 20; Golden Square 14.
Golden Square - Liam Smith (c), Jake Higgins, Max Grant, Callum Tibbett, Scott Trollope, Kayle Thompson, Tom Campbell, Benjamin Derrick, Jack Keating, Riley Hocking, Connor Miller.
Bendigo United - Miggy Podosky (c), Josh Thurston, Ashley Younghusband, Jayden Templeton, Riley Treloar, Harry Donegan, Tom Batters, Billy Quirk, Ben Daley, Jake Thrum, Scott Harper.
EAGLEHAWK v KANGAROO FLAT
12.30pm Saturday at Canterbury Park.
The Kangaroo Flat bowling unit has drawn plenty of attention to it this season - and rightly so, it's ranked No.1 and that's without Dylan Klemm (back) being part of it of late.
But after years of the batting being the knock on the Roos, that's not the case this season, with the side revelling chasing targets.
The Roos have batted second 10 times in their 11 games and have nine wins on the board, so certainly haven't been affected by first-year skipper Chris Barber's struggles at the toss (3-8).
The Roos - who have the competition's leading wicket-taker Brent Hamblin (22) - take on an Eaglehawk side that has been so near, yet so far the past fortnight, losing to Huntly-North Epsom by two wickets and Golden Square by two runs.
Win those two games and the Hawks are only percentage outside the top four. Instead, they're two games out.
It's a fine line, but all part of the learning curve for a side that is building.
Last time: Kangaroo Flat 4-135 def Eaglehawk 9-133.
Since 2000: Eaglehawk 14; Kangaroo Flat 10.
Eaglehawk - Cory Jacobs (c), Josh Williams, Aaron Monro, Richard Tibbett, Anthony West, Nash Viney, Ben Williams, Nick Farley, Angus Chisholm, Brendan Archbold, Sam Williams.
Kangaroo Flat - Chris Barber (c), Adam Burns, Kenny Beith, Brent Hamblin, Nathan Stubbings, Jake Klemm, Dylan Klemm, Riley Burns, Ryan Harling, Matt Dwyer, Lewis Stabler.
HUNTLY-NORTH EPSOM v BENDIGO
12.30pm Saturday at Strauch Reserve.
Bendigo is enduring a tough period of the fixture that presents another difficult challenge.
The Goers have lost to Strathdale-Maristians (1st) and Strathfieldsaye (4th) in their past two games, and now confront another top-four side in Huntly-North Epsom (3rd) at Strauch Reserve.
Shane Koop is coming off scores of 46 n.o. and 42 in his past two hits for the Goers in his new middle-order role, while the Goers' Kyle Humphrys continues to lead the BDCA runs with 482.
The Power will be hoping opener Ryan Grundy can continue his good form. He's come back from the mid-season break with scores of 89 and 55 and now has 358 runs for the season, while their bowling unit is ranked No.2 behind Kangaroo Flat.
Last time: Huntly-North Epsom 8-212 def Bendigo 148.
Since 2000: Bendigo 19; Huntly-North Epsom 7.
Huntly-North Epsom - Elliott Massina (c), Peter Manser, Adam Ward, Ryan Grundy, Danushka Wijemanna, Brett Elvey, Malan Madusanka, Sandun Ranathunga, Tharindu Darshana, Supun Devinda, Thusith Alboruge.
Bendigo - Nathan Fitzpatrick (c), Kyle Humphrys, Shane Koop, Dylan Johnstone, Bailey George, Matthew Gray, Craig Pearce, Declan Slingo, Aden Shanahan, Xav Ryan, Jotham Higgs.
2. Kangaroo Flat
3. White Hills
7. Huntly-North Epsom
8. Golden Square
10. Bendigo United
1. Kangaroo Flat
2. Huntly-North Epsom
5. Golden Square
7. White Hills
8. Bendigo United
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