BEAVERS END YEAR ON TOP, PANTHERS CASE OUT KNIGHTS
By Richard Millott
Less than a year after gaining promotion to Norm Reeves Shield, Lysterfield go into the Christmas break as the team to chase after victory over Belgrave in the Round 7 T20.
The visitors took first use of Belgrave Reserve, with Anthony Brolic carrying the bat through the innings whilst ensuring the Beavers were ahead of expectations. Nathan Walsh hit a 26-ball half century to put the score at 2/90 before Brolic forged ahead, ending the innings on 94 not out from 58 balls, including 5 fours and 5 sixes. For the Pies, Jarrod McPhee was the pick of the bowlers with 3/32 as Lysterfield reached 5/195 from their 20 overs. The Pie reply was stifled by the spread of the bowling attack, with only Johnathon Levell (34) making a start as Belgrave reached 8/126. Belgrave have now slipped to 7th on the ladder and will look to start the new year on the right foot against The Basin, whilst Lysterfield will look to continue their form as ladder leaders against Knoxfield at Carrington Park.
Eildon Park’s Ben Casey has invented himself into a T20 specialist, causing major headaches against Knoxfield. The Knights started reasonably enough at 2/38 before Casey went on a run with the ball, initiating a fall of 7/24 with Casey claiming 5/11 from his 4 overs to have the Knights at 79. David Smyth reached 43 in the reply to help the Panthers to the points, passing the target at 1/81 in the 13th over. Eildon Park now find themselves in 4th place and will be looking to replicate their win against Ferntree Gully Footballers from earlier in the season to keep momentum. For the Knights, a percentage drop of 0.23 brings them to 3rd ahead of hosting Lysterfield in Round 8 to start 2020.
Knox Gardens jumped to 2nd after defeating The Basin. The Bears started in form, reaching 1/52 from the opening 6 overs before the Falcons tightened the screws to be 3/118 from 15 overs. Blake Walter lead the way with 62 as the visitors ended at 5/149 from their 20 overs. The Falcon top order stood tall, with Pete Dunlop (50) and Jarrod Butcher (66*) both scoring half centuries to help reach the target with just under 2 overs to spare, the day ending at 4/150. Knox Gardens will look to secure the break they have when they take on Upper Ferntree Gully after Christmas, whilst for The Basin they will be searching for victory against Belgrave after slipping to 5th.
After being involved in a hat-trick last Sunday for the wrong reasons, Ferntree Gully Footballers’ Nic Bogar claimed a hat-trick for the right reasons in the Griffen’s win against neighbouring Johnson Park. The Sharks regretted their decision to bat first as Bogar claimed the first 3 scalps in as many balls to be 3/24, with the Griffens’ relentless in the field and with the ball in hand to dismiss the Sharks for 97 – Bogar ending at 4/8 from his 3.3 overs. Lachlan Storey (40*) and Ben Rawlings (37) ensured the Christmas Party kicked off on the right foot, ending at 2/98 with 4 overs to spare. The big win has helped the Griffens edge Belgrave on the ladder to 6th place, whilst Johnson Park remain in 9th. Ferntree Gully Footballers will enter One Day mode against Eildon Park, whilst Johnson Park will take a trip to Upwey to open their campaign.
Upper Ferntree Gully sent a huge scare through the Upwey ranks, with the Kings coming within 4 runs of their first win of the season. Earlier, the Tigers ran away early as Matt Mulcahy (31), Dain Howe (36) and Julian Whetstone (45) looked to score big as the home team reached 7/165, with Jay Colee (3/26) providing a fightback with the ball for the Kings. The chase turned into a recovery mission from 4/40 before some middle-order performances from Phil Salter (33 off 24 balls) and Corey Wilson (35 off 22 balls) kept the Kings well in the hunt. The final over ticked past and whilst the Kings made a fantastic attempt, the Tigers held onto the points with the reply score at 9/161. The Tigers’ win still keeps them in 8th ahead of their match against Johnson Park, whilst the Kings will regroup after the break and look to open the campaign against Knox Gardens.
In Decoite Shield, it was a special day for Jason Fraser in Monbulk’s match against Mountain Gate, notching up his 10,000th senior run at HV Jones Reserve. Mitch Goddard started well at the top of the order for the Gators and departed at 2/53, a defining point of the match as the Hawks bowlers triggered a collapse. Chris Martin (5/19) and Braden Tauber (3/17) lead the way to dismiss the Gators for 77. In reply, the Gators still created a match of things to claim 5/78, however Jason Fraser reached 48 not out in the chase to help take Monbulk to 2nd on the ladder. The Hawks take on South Belgrave in the return match, whilst for Mountain Gate they will host Knox Gardens at HV Jones.
Josh Henry nearly scored a rare T20 century as Ferntree Gully claimed victory over St Johns Tecoma. The Blues were lead by Henry from the top of the order, partnering with Jayden Bradbury (32) to take the score to 2/105 before finishing at 2/157, with Henry scoring 98 not out from just 69 balls. In reply, the Saints struggled to get Harry Cowling (3/14 off 4 overs) out of the way as the Blues attack limited starts to be 5/26 at one stage. The Saints batted out the innings to reach 8/109 in reply. The Blues remain a game clear on top ahead of their January encounter with Rowville, whilst St Johns sit in 5th and will look to return to their winning ways against Olinda.
Knox Gardens’ strong form continued against Rowville, with the Falcons now sitting a game clear of the chasing pack in 4th place. Callum O’Connor (48) and Adam Wylde (31) took the Falcons to a competitive total of 6/140, despite Brett Gatehouse claiming 3/24. In reply, Rowville were contained by the Falcons, the Hawks reaching 9/106 by day’s end. The Falcons travel to Mountain Gate after the break, whilst Rowville will take on Ferntree Gully.
South Belgrave sit 3rd after a successful trip to Olinda. Batting first, Mark Baker (33) once again got South away early before Jordan McDermott auditioned for the BBL, striking 86 runs in 48 balls including 7 fours and 6 sixes to take South to 3/177 at the end of the overs. In reply, Josh Langer (60*) helped the Bloods to a competitive total however fell short at 2/143. South Belgrave travel to Monbulk for Round 8, whilst Olinda host St Johns Tecoma.
PROVISIONAL LADDER – NORM REEVES SHIELD (CONCLUSION OF ROUND 7)
LYSTERFIELD – 36PTS (1.428%)
KNOX GARDENS – 36PTS (1.195%)
KNOXFIELD – 30PTS (1.519%)
EILDON PARK – 30PTS (1.435%)
The Basin – 30pts (1.161%)
FTG Footballers – 18pts (0.878%)
Belgrave – 18pts (0.872%)
Upwey – 12pts (0.990%)
Johnson Park – 0pts (0.641%)
Upper FTG – 0pts (0.629%)
PROVISIONAL LADDER – DECOITE SHIELD (CONCLUSION OF ROUND 7)
FERNTREE GULLY – 36PTS (1.854%)
MONBULK – 30PTS (1.353%)
SOUTH BELGRAVE – 30PTS (1.281%)
KNOX GARDENS – 24PTS (1.170%)
St Johns Tecoma – 18pts (1.074%)
Rowville – 18pts (0.921%)
Mountain Gate – 12pts (0.527%)
Olinda – 0pts (0.565%)