COUNTRY WEEK CENTURY WHETS APPETITE FOR PROVINCIAL FINALS
By Richard Millott
A Century to Julian Whetstone has seen Ferntree Gully’s dream start to Melbourne Country Week continued on Tuesday, with a 48-run win over Traralgon & District CA.
Again batting first, Ferntree Gully recovered from the loss of Pete Dunlop early to put on a 206-run partnership in a performance believed to be a new 2nd wicket partnership record for the FTGDCA Senior Representative team. Julian Whetstone and Aaron Brunner were clinical together before Brunner was dismissed on 96. Whetstone continued to score despite the loss of Tom Boxell (15) and Jayden Bradbury (8). A Zac Wilson cameo at the end saw the Knight score 16 from only 4 balls faced to finish with the score at 4/279 from the 50 overs. But it was Whetstone who stole the show, ending up as the first FTGDCA player to ever score a century at provincial level, not out on 124.
A solid start by Traralgon saw the total at 72 before Jay Colee (1/31 from 6 overs) broke through in the 14th over, which then broke through with frequent wickets to have the chase stalled at 5/100. More breakthroughs continued however Traralgon’s final pairing put on 77 runs for the final wicket, eventually being dismissed for 231. Nathan Caton-Robertson claimed 3/46 from his 10 overs, whilst not to be outdone, Aaron Brunner took 3/45 from 9.2 overs in a genuine all-round performance. Zac Wilson (1/40 from 10 overs), Jay Colee and Tom Boxell (1/36 from 8 overs) were also amongst the wickets. Likewise Jayden Turcinovic starred behind the stumps, claiming 3 catches and a run-out.
Speaking after the match, skipper Tom Boxell was pleased with the performance.
“It’s always great when the top order fires and we had that today with Aaron and Julian with a superb century. Both of them hardly played a false shot all day scoring around the ground as the liked.
“A good flourish at the end from Zac, giving us an extra 16 there in the final over.
“With the ball, spin seemed the way to go and Aaron and Zac the key early on to keeping things under control, with Nathan providing a good supply of wickets also.
“A bit frustrating that we couldn’t break the last-wicket stand sooner to claim the bonus point, but importantly it’s another win and a great one to keep momentum going.”
Ferntree Gully now sit a game clear on top of the White Pool, joining Geelong CA in Blue Pool as the only undefeated Provincial teams. The Gully conclude the final Pool match tomorrow against Sale-Maffra CA, the match being hosted at Casey Fields #5 from 10am.