Inverloch’s Wal Taberner tried hard to steady the ship after a run of early wickets in the A Grade Division One Semi-final at Leongatha, but the constant pressure in the field by OMK was telling and the Stingrays fell well short of their target and a place in this weekend’s final. M441214
• A Grade Division 1 Cricket
THE Wonthaggi Workers and Outtrim Moyarra Kongwak will meet in this weekend’s A Grade Division 1 Grand Final at Butch West Oval.
Their wins in the semi-finals set up a tantalising rematch of last year’s epic grand final in which OMK triumphed at the death.
Both the Workers and the Diggers advanced through the decider after easy victories over Nerrena and Inverloch respectively.
The Workers needed just 71.2 of their 180 over match to claim their passage through to the final over an abysmal Nerrena at Butch West Oval.
The Red Caps won the toss and batted first but the loss of early and cheap wickets set the tone for the innings with batsmen not giving much of a yelp against the Thomas-led Workers attack. The Red Caps were bundled out for 55 inside 43 overs.
Youngster Jakeb Thomas was the chief destroyer taking 4/18 from 14.2 overs while fellow opener and older brother Ryan chipped in taking 2/27 from 13 overs. Gav Britt’s 2/8 off 10 overs and 2/2 off five from Tim Hooper spelt the end for the Red Caps.
The Workers had little trouble reaching the required 56 runs, finishing their innings and the match at 3/60 after 29 overs. Tim Hooper made 15 and Jay Baker was unbeaten on 26 at the close of play handing the Workers a handy day off on Sunday.
IT WAS a tighter contest at West Campus where OMK took on Inverloch.
OMK skipper Jason Wilson won the toss and batted first, but it was a decision he could have quickly regretted with Inverloch’s bowlers stunning the Diggers’ top order having them at 3/1, which could have easily been four out if not for a dropped catch of Tom Wyatt’s blade in the cordon.
Wyatt went on to top score for his side making a patient 41 from 124 balls, occupying the crease with Kris Kerr (27 off 122) to halt the Stingrays’ momentum.
Contributions from the lower order including 19 from Paul Dyer, 14 from Barry Wyatt and Nathan Cant and 13 from Sam Jenkins got the Diggers out of trouble to post a competitive total of 153 from 80 overs.
Kit Rotthier was the pick of the Stingrays’ bowlers taking 4/51 off 26, bowling well with fellow opener Ryan Thomas who picked up 3/33 from 17.
The Stingrays then had a difficult nine over period to bat and lost opener Jason Dennerley to be 1/19 at stumps on day one – 135 runs shy of victory.
Diggers opener Al Jenkins claimed the vital early wickets of Brett Debono and Leroy Sharrock early on Sunday and the Stingrays never recovered. After a generous 17 extras from the OMK attack, Will Rankin was next best making 16 from Wal Taberner with 15 as the Stingrays crumbled to be all out for 101 after 52.3 overs.
Jenkins finished with 3/25 from 14 overs but was bettered by Barry Wyatt who claimed the best figures of the semi-finals with 4/9 off 11.3. Spinner Sam Jenkins took 3/13 off eight, including the wicket of Inverloch captain Dylan Clark just before the tea break.