Round 11 – Day 1 Review
It looked uncomplicated, like shelling peas – that was Tracy Village’s Josh Kann as he smashed Nightcliff’s Ryan McElduff to all parts of Nightcliff Oval to move from 29 to 51 in a single over (1x6, 4x4, 1xdot). Sent in to bat by stand-in Tiger captain Joel Curtis, the home side looked on track for an easy day when both Village openers were back in the shed with only 20 runs on the board. But step-up Coby Edmondstone (29 - batting at three) and Kaan (57 at four) together with an improved middle order – Antum Naqvi (59 at five), Noah Mcfadyen (60 at seven), Harry Kitschke (45 n.o. at eleven; 15 balls, 5x6, 3x4) and the Villagers sailed to an impressive 10-307 at the close.
Apart from the early couple of wickets, Nightcliff toiled strongly but with the absence of skipper Nash Sant who has succumbed to a lower back injury and will miss the remainder of the season – a young man who doesn’t carry any weight excess and bowls off-spin from a few paces and still suffers a back injury – Hmmmm? Anyway, only medium pacer Josh Hartill (3-57) looked in any way likely to restrict the relatively free-flowing, albeit often resolute, Village batters.
Led by a Josh Neill century (101) and a quickfire innings from Lachlan Bangs (58; 9x4, 2x6) PINT was finally bowled out by Darwin for 260 (72.4 overs). It was a much improved effort by the Green top order with all five contributing against a Darwin attack using the (day / night) pink ball. Recently effective Eagle opening bowlers Troy Ryan (1-43) and a wicketless Luke Zanchetta looked menacing early but the PINT batsmen displayed a rare ability to hold on and at 6-253, a huge score looked likely, but, the introduction of Darwin LAO pair Connor Hawkins (4-41) and Tom Andrews (4-69) routed the remainder with the last four wickets falling for a mere seven runs and PINT was reduced to 10-260 from just 72.4 overs.
In reply, Darwin is 0-7 with Anthony Adlam (6 n.o.) and Adam Costello (1 n.o.) at the crease.
In a rarity, Waratah opening batsmen didn’t offer their usual commanding presence and both – Isaac Conway and Ashley Chandrasinghe - were sent back with only 26 runs on the board at the normally run friendly Gerry Wood Oval. However, Dylan Hunter (116 n.o.), Austin Umpherston (47) together with some solid middle / late order support resulted in the Red Caps clawing their way to a respectable 9-275 (81 overs).
Districts bowlers led by Brodie Symons (3-55) and Matt Hammond (2-46) otherwise shared the spoils and will be pleased with the result in the belief they have the batting to compete strongly in a must win game for the rural area men.
Round 11 – Day 2 Preview
Nightcliff have a warranted belief in its batting which has been their strongest suite all season with top order players Joel Curtis and Ryan McElduff combining to get their side off to a solid start and then an effective middle order placing the raspberries on the panna cotta.
Village middle order batting played out of their collective skins last week and even though they have 307 on the board, Tracy’s bowlers must also lift to ensure they emulate the willow wielders – a win to either side is essential if they consider themselves a serious finals threat. Foremost in the Village thoughts is that Josh Kann can regain his early season devastating form with the ball which would balance his current outstanding batting.
Districts is another team with pressure to win and while their batting is capable of reaching the required target (276), in the past however, large totals have been due to the Jackson Isakka / Matthew Hammond mix, and while stating the obvious, others must contribute – Kierran Voelkl, Dean Fry, Brodie Symons and Daniel Mylius are all better players than their 2021 statistics reflect. I could not be critical of the way Waratah present in their matches, but clearly, bowling is not its strongest discipline and this game, played at home, is the ideal opportunity for the Croc’s to fly.
Well done to PINT batsman Josh Neill in particular last week but Darwin left it too late to bring on spin twins Tom Andrews and Connor Hawkins when it became obvious that front liners Luke Zanchetta and Troy Ryan were not able to wreak havoc as they have done in previous red ball matches. The Green total (260) is not beyond Darwin’s reach given Anthony Adlam, Beau Webster, Harry Chamberlain and Jacob Dickman are all capable of destroying the mediocre PINT attack where only Blade Baxter, and to an extent Tim Garner, have displayed a likelihood to govern a batting line.
It seems though that Darwin will be entering foreign territory because it is highly unlikely they will attain the target inside a couple of hours which has been the situation in its past two red ball games. The question being: how will the Eagles handle playing cricket till around the expected end of play on day two of a match?
Round 11 Fixture - Saturday
10 and 17 July
Nightcliff v Tracy Village at Nightcliff Oval (12:30pm)
Darwin v PINT at DXC Arena (3pm – day/night)
Southern Districts v Waratah at Gerry Wood Oval (12:30pm)