Cricketers and cricket officials around the district will have a chance to rediscover their friends and families this weekend with the local cricket competition going into hibernation for the Brisbane Test. Of course, those friends and family might have to join them on the couch in front of the TV as they watch possibly the most awaited Ashes series in living memory, but hey, at least theyre not out getting heat stroke.
Last weekend produced two complete rounds of the Byron Private Life one day competition. Marist Brothers and Souths were the big winners while Casino, Easts and Tintenbar stumbled and Workers Club secured their first victory of the season.
Brothers one day wonders
Marist Brothers continued their good form, following up their Hooker League win over Casino with a one day win over the early season bolters. Chris Ball was in sublime touch on the dead Nesbitt Park pitch, top scoring with 78 n.o. as the Brethren accumulated a decent 4 for 171. Wade Sweeney, returning from representative duties, was the pick of the Cavaliers attack. The Cavaliers reply was swift and productive, with Mal Hancock and Scott Sheppard getting away to a good start until out-swinger Craig Ferguson halted the rot. Then Brothers brought on Michael Singh and the young leg spinner took 4 for 23 as the Cavaliers over played their hand and collapsed to be all out for 143.
Sunday proved to be another good day for Brothers as they overhauled Alstonvilles paltry 88 on the dead-as-a-Monty-Python-parrot pitch at Wollongbar. In a day of captains knocks, Derek Partridge tried to keep things together for Alstonville, managing 24, while Craig Hamshaw (24 n.o.) dug in on the Hillpark track to ensure the win. Brothers Steve Prosser stood out on the bowling front, capturing 3 for 8.
Souths on song
Souths resurgence continued with the perennial champions getting the better of a determined Ballina Bears on Saturday thanks to another quality innings from Paul McLean. Chasing a total of 7 for 186, McLean constructed 99 n.o. on the slow track at Fripp Oval to guide the gold and green home. Souths Sunday match against Lennox Head proved to be a field day for the Nind brothers, with Anthony, Richard and Michael getting their side away to a flying start and posting 237 from their 40 overs. In reply, Lennox were never in the hunt and shut up shop, using the hit out as batting practise. Consequently Souths experimented with their bowling and captain Richard Nind bowled and took two extraordinary caught and bowls.
Workers last wicket heroics
Workers young number 11 Matt Walter put on 36 with fellow youngster Jeremy Cowin to capture Workers Clubs first victory of the season against the Pirates on Lennox Heads new field, Megan Cresent Oval. Mark Denmeade opened up for Lennox, making 54 as he anchored the innings for the Pirates. Apart from Jason Caught (2 for 7), who always bowls well, young Brendan Santin (a Max Walker-esque medium pacer) extracted bounce and pace to pick up 2 for 12 as Lennox managed a total of 9 for 133. Workers responded by falling in a heap and looked like going down again when Cowin and Walter produced their match winning last wicket stand.
Sadly for Workers their luck failed them on Sunday when they met Ballina Bears at Nesbitt Park. The Bears piled on the runs, smashing 233 thanks mainly to a very classy century from captain Andrew Gordon. Workers didnt really try to keep up with the run rate, scoring 9 for 109 in reply. Ballinas Sam Rippon was the pick of the bowlers, taking 3 for 11 with his angled medium pacers.
Crawford lets off some steam
Despite a Bradman-like performance at the Country Championships where he scored two centuries from three bats, Brett Crawford was not selected in the NSW Country Team. It was a glaring and galling omission for last years Player of the Year and on Sunday the punishing all-rounder pounded 58 off less than 30 balls against the Hawks at Oakes Oval. After Crawfords dismissal things settled down and the Bar ended up with 9 for 207 from their 40 overs. The Hawks notably compact opener Daniel Cox (96) put up a good showing in reply but they fell too far behind the run rate to make a serious attempt on the total.
The Sunday win came as a relief for the Bar as they had lost their Saturday match to lowly Alstonville on the horror pitch at Hill Park. Although Alstonville only managed 126 Tintenbar fell in a hole to be all out for 92. Left arm orthodox Steve Robb (4 for 14) thrived on the Hill Park pitch, with the ball regularly going through the surface, producing some unusual effects. The win continues Alstonvilles status as the Bars bogie team.
Easts questionable conversion rate
Easts accounted for the Hawks at Oakes Oval on Saturday with consummate ease, however, they seriously came unstuck against Casino on Sunday. Set a meagre 154, Easts only lost three wickets accumulating the runs at Oakes on Saturday. Paul Simes (74 n.o.) scored the bulk of the runs in the 33-over innings.
On Sunday five of the Waratahs top order got a start but none of them went on with it as they fell 15 runs shy of the Cavaliers 6 for 142. Casinos opener Scott Sheppard continued his season in the sun, scoring 54 as he set the Cavaliers on the road to another win, while Wade Sweeney proved to be the pick of their attack.
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