SOUTHERN CRICKET ASSOCIATION
New Norfolk I kept its finals hopes alive on Saturday with a 68-run win over bottom-placed St Aidan's at Cambridge Oval. The Red Caps made 7/259 off their 50 overs and in reply St Aidan's was bowled out for 191 off 47.5 overs. With the bat for New Norfolk, Harry Booth made a fine 88 at number four, hitting a game high seven fours and three sixes. Stewart Rice made a handy 45 (six fours, one six) while captain Jason Rigby remained 41 not out with three fours. With the ball it was Josh Dykes who did the damage, taking 4-45 off 9.3 overs. Nathan Eiszele was nearly as good taking 3-44 (10) while Seb Wishart was 2-22 (10).
The Knights defeated Molesworth I by 108 runs in a high-scoring affair at Collinsvale Oval. Batting first, the home side made the huge score of 4/396 off its 50 overs. Opener Jeremy Nichols was the best of the Molesworth bowlers with 2-52 (10). In reply the visitors gave it a good shake but were bowled out for 288 off 47.4 overs. Batting at number seven, Nick Piuselli did very well, putting together a fine 85 with nearly all his runs coming in boundaries (12 fours and four sixes). Opener Josh Ransley also batted well making 72 with 13 well-struck fours. At number 10, Jeremy Nichols held his end up, remaining 39 not out with three fours.
At Gretna, the home side went down to Montagu Bay by 39 runs. The Sharks had first knock, making 10/211 off 48.2 overs. Darren Lennox in his 50th match for Gretna I was the main wicket-taker with 3-49 (10). Mathew Burns got 2-12 (4.2) and spinner Ben Rainbird 2-21 (5). In reply, Gretna couldn't quite get there, finishing 10/172 off 46.3 overs. Evergreen Brian Smith made 36 not out (three fours). Glenn Blackwell also made 36, hitting four fours, while Rhys Browning 26 (one four, one six) and Craig Cunningham 20 (one four) were next best.
Playing at home, Bothwell I won the toss and elected to bat, making the very big score of 10/307 off 48 overs. This big score was helped along by Bucks captain Cody Eyles, batting at number six, who made a fine 104 in a great knock. The lower order batted very well, with number seven Brad Eyles and number nine Matthew Eyles with 42 runs apiece. At number 10, Craig Pursell made 18. There were 53 extras including 37 wides. In reply and playing one man short, Derwent was bowled out for 85 off 26.3 overs. Matthew Eyles put in a great match with both bat and ball, sending down six overs to take 4-14 in yet another good spell. Speedster Brock Nichols showed good support taking 3-31 off 6.3 overs. Openers Nathan White and Craig Pursell got one wicket each.
At Tynwald Park, second-placed New Norfolk II easily accounted for Gretna II by six wickets. Wining the toss, the Red Caps sent Gretna in and the visitors were soon in trouble at 3/19. Not much improved and they were bowled out for 63 off 34.3 overs. The Gretna batsmen just couldn't match it with the home sides bowlers. Jamie Hill sent down just 4.3 overs to finish with the excellent figures of 3 for 3. Cody Morgan-Coleman snared 3-16 off 7 overs in another great display while Josh Walsh was at his measly best, sending down 10 overs to take 2 for just 11 runs. Aaron Drew did likewise with 1-14 (7) as did Nathan Rice 1-16 (6). For Gretna, only Jordan Hastie made it to double figures with 14 (one four). In reply, the Red Caps finished 4/64 off just nine overs. Opener Leigh Berry top-scored with 29, hitting five fours. Nathan Rice remained 8 not out with one six. For the Gretna bowlers, Aaron Browning took 2-15 (2) and Jackson Ackerly 2-29 (5).
Playing at home, Bushy Park went down to the undefeated Bagdad by 101 runs. Bagdad made 10/191 off 38.2 overs. Dylan Grant took 3-32 (5). Nicholas Fenton 3-33 (9.2) and Geoff Crosswell 3-37 (7). In reply Bushy Park was bowled out for 80 off 22 overs. Dylan Grant top-scored with 18 and Shaun Fenton 17.
Molesworth II recorded its first win of the season with a 61-run victory over Sandford at Boyer Oval. After being sent into bat, Molesworth made 10/164 off 38.3 overs. Opener Khan Stokes put in a great performance making 68. Stokes hit eight fours in his time at the crease. Chris Sinclair was next best with 16 (two fours). In reply, Sandford, playing one short, was bowled out for 9/104 off 25 overs. This was due to the efforts of opening bowler Dean King who, in his first game of the season, captured the excellent figures of 4-7 off 8 overs. King was well supported by captain Jack Evans 2-33 off 7 overs. Well done to Molesworth II. The side has never thrown in the towel despite some big loses and narrow matches that didn't go their way. Persistence has paid off.
New Norfolk II went down to Wellington at Risdon Vale by 18 runs. Wellington had first dig, making 10/130 off 36.2 overs and in reply New Norfolk fell agonisingly short, finishing 10/112 off 27.3 overs. At one stage the Red Caps were 5-21, but a very handy 38 from Brendan Skelly (four fours) steadied the ship somewhat, but from there things again fell away. Jake Bearman was next best with 19 (three fours). With the ball, Brad Kemmler did well taking 2-18 (7) as did Mitch Rice 2-19 (10) and Liam Kalbfell 2-21 (6).
Bothwell defeated St Aidan's at Cambridge Oval on Sunday by 73 runs. Bothwell had first hit, making 10/248 off 46.5 overs and in reply the home side finished 8/175 off its 50 overs. Rhys Franklin took two wickets as did Peter Hansch and Mark Pearce. No other details were available at the time of writing.