MORTLAKE defeated Terang by four wickets in the first week of South West Cricket one-day matches at D.C. Farran Oval on Saturday.
A knock of 84 from opener Tyler Schafer was the catalyst for victory, as Mortlake continued an unbeaten start to the season.
Terang had earlier batted their 50 overs, posting 5/166, with Tyson Hay (60) and Liam Geary (31) top scoring.
Tom Moloney (27), Tim Keane (13) and Ben Graesser (13) also made starts for the visitors
Five Mortlake players each claimed a wicket, with Todd Lamont (1/17) and Isaac Wareham (1/17) the best with the ball.
In reply, Mortlake chased the target down in the 46th over, with Schafer well supported by skipper Lamont, who finished unbeaten on 47 for the Cats.
Neil Kelly (17) was the only other player to reach double figures for Mortlake.
The wickets were shared amongst six bowlers for Terang, with Keane (1/12) and Brett Hunger (1/22) producing the best figures.
Noorat’s experience played a vital role in the Steamrollers’ four wicket win over Camperdown.
Bernie Harris, Ben Kenna and Pat Heffernan all made valuable contributions with the bat, whilst Dave Roberts claimed wickets with the ball.
The quartet’s performances ensured that the Steamrollers secured an opening one-day round victory against the Lakers.
Noorat skipper Gus Bourke elected to bowl first, and whilst his reasons for doing so were to his sides strengths, their opposition relished the opportunity to bat and started well.
“We won the toss and put them into bat because I think we just like bowling a bit first, I like to chase,” Bourke said.
“They started pretty well, Jye McLaughlin got off to a pretty good start, made 25 or so, but we knew if we got him that they didn’t really have the strongest batting line-up.”
Camperdown were 4/85, as Bourke, Roberts, Luke Justin and Isaac Kenna claimed the first four wickets.
Noorat was able to limit Camperdown’s scoring, but Lakers skipper Steven Fisher (51) proved a foil in the Steamrollers’ plans.
Fisher was run out by Isaac Kenna with the score on 147, and Shane Wilson (1) followed five runs later.
Some lofty hitting at the end of the innings from Bernard McLeod (24 not out) and Simon Richardson (14 not out) lifted the Lakers to 7/181 from their 50 overs.
Bourke admitted he was a little surprised that Camperdown managed to get to 181, particularly given Fisher was the only one to capitalise.
He reserved praise for his younger bowlers in Justin (1/26) and Isaac Kenna (1/46), saying the pair will be important to his side across the season.
“Luke Justin bowled pretty well with Isaac Kenna, which is good because they’re both pretty young,” Bourke said.
“It just gives us another option with bowling and batting when Stephen Staunton and Warren Attrill get back with the new ball, it just gives a little more consistency.
“In the dying overs I know I can toss them the ball and I can trust them knowing they can bowl a good line.”
Roberts (2/28) finished with the best figures for Noorat, as Justin (1/28), Bourke (1/34), Nick Kenna (1/40) and Isaac Kenna (1/46) were the only bowlers used.
Noorat made a strong start to the run chase, with Heffernan and Harris sharing a 52 run partnership before the former was dismissed for 37.
Dean Abbott was dismissed with only one added to the score, and whilst Noorat had lost two quick wickets, Bourke wasn’t fazed by the loss with Harris still in the middle.
“Not with Bernie out there, I don’t think he was going to let them (take the game away from Noorat),” Bourke said.
Ben Kenna joined Harris at the crease, with the pair adding 96 for the third wicket before Harris departed for 42, with the score 3/149
Camperdown added the wicket of Martin Wynd for four just eight runs later, but with Kenna still at the crease; Noorat never lost control of the match.
“It was pretty controlled, the 30 over mark I think they got Bernie out and they had a bit of a run on, but we had wickets and overs in hand to get the runs,” Bourke said.
Kenna guided Noorat to within seven of the required total, before he was dismissed lbw for 66, with Bourke and Nick Kenna seeing the Steamrollers over the line.
Bourke was impressed with Ben Kenna’s innings, saying that Camperdown played to his strengths and he reaped the rewards.
“I don’t know how he does it, but he just comes in and hits everything off the middle of the bat straightaway,” Bourke said.
“They kept bowling short at him, it was more their bowlers bowling to his attacking shots.”
Bourke was also pleased with how Heffernan and Harris used their experience to get the Steamrollers off to a good start, establishing control of the innings.
“We know Patty and Bernie are always going to do what they do, they’re pretty experienced,” Bourke said.
“Patty was hitting the ball really well; I think he just copped a good ball out of nowhere.
“Bernie just kept getting these ones and twos, how he does, but it’s just good to have level heads up the top of the order.
“You don’t think they’re going to play a loose shot out of nowhere; it’s just really nice to have experienced players up the top.”
Noorat will face Terang in the second round this weekend, with the match set to be held on the turf at Terang.
Bourke said there will be minimal change, if any, to his side, but expected the match to be well contested at this stage of the season.
He didn’t cite the need for too much improvement; however he did note that his side would be in for catching practice at training ahead of Saturday.
“Hopefully we’ll have the same team or maybe Staunton will come back in, but it should probably be a good game on the turf down there early in the season,” Bourke said.
“On Thursday night I’ll probably get them out to do some more catching, just higher catches, just like easy catches that we should be taking.
“It’s just frustrating because the bowlers are working that hard to get one loose stroke, it’s just painful to watch them drop it.”
This weekend Mortlake will host Heytesbury, whilst Terang and Noorat meet at Terang Turf.