North could not have asked for a better start to the Barrier District Cricket League [BDCL] season this last weekend, as they recorded big victories in the B-Grade and the Women’s League over South and West respectively.
In B-Grade North recorded a mammoth 153 run victory over South.
Eyebrows were raised when South won the toss and elected to bowl but for a brief moment it seemed like the right decision when Binu Sebastian clean bowled Lachie Bell for a duck in the first over.
Sadly, that’s where the joy ended for South.
Scott Rogers and Sheldon Hall combined to steady the ship for North, putting on a 74-run partnership before Hall was dismissed.
Rogers followed soon after, and South might’ve found their way back into the game but it wasn’t to be. Anthony Tidball and Ben Victory snuffed out any thoughts of a comeback from the bowling side with a 79-run partnership.
A couple of wickets fell as North looked to pile on runs in the last few overs, and they finished on 6/174 after the 30 overs.
There is only one word to describe South’s innings at the crease and that is disaster.
Half of their team were back in the shed before they had hit double figures. Bowlers Kieran McEvoy and Jaxon Cain terrorised the top and middle order, taking figures of 4/13 and 3/6 respectively.
By the time they had finished their first spell, the match was over as a contest.
South were eventually bowled out for 21, with North recording a behemoth 153 run victory to kick start their B-Grade campaign.
“It was really good to get off to a good start and it helped to have Sheldon [Hall] who is A-Grade quality,” Ben Victory told the Barrier Truth.
“The boys are gelling well together and it’s good to see so many committing to training so early this season.”
Elsewhere in Men’s B-Grade action, West picked up a comfortable victory over Central at the Zinc Oval.
West batted first and were never really troubled by Central, recording a 59-run victory. Central were bowled out for a paltry 45 in reply to West’s score of 9/104.
North take on Central at the Zinc Oval this coming weekend, while South will look to pick up the pieces from a disastrous weekend as they take on Warriors at the Norm Fox Oval in B-Grade action.
The joy continued for North as they defeated reigning champions West in the opener to the Women’s BDCL campaign.
North was sent into bat and immediately impressed. Debutant Steph Balman had a first match to remember as she carted the West bowlers all over the park on her way to making 60 from 61 deliveries.
Her opening partner Jo Smith was the perfect foil for Balman as she played her supporting role to perfection. The 117-run partnership is a record for the North Women’s side.
West’s Megan Cumming got the wicket of Steph Balman and North finished on 1/136.
We spoke to Steph following her sensational knock.
“I pretty much settled in a little bit, saw a couple, and thought I don’t feel too bad today. Whatever I could hit, I hit.”
The result has built confidence in the North camp who are already eyeing a tilt at the title this year.
“Obviously they [West] were short and have a few players to come back in,” said Steph, “but I think we are definitely up there to contest them this season.”
The West Women’s side began their chase well, with wicket taker Megan Cumming leading from the front with a fantastic innings. Unfortunately for West, their rhythm was interrupted with both
Sarah Knotts and Penelope Billings retiring hurt.
Cumming fell agonisingly short of a half century but remained not out on 44 as West fell short in the opening match of the season, finishing at 2/95.
Reigning premiers West will look to bounce back immediately as they take on South at the Norm Fox Oval on the weekend, whilst North will be hoping to make it two in a row when they take on Central at the Zinc Oval.