THE Under 16 teams in last Sunday’s LDCA Junior Cricket Grand Final, Koonwarra/RSL and Wonthaggi Club, staged one of the best final’s matches you’d ever want to see, on an excellent turf wicket at Korumburra.
Batting first, Wonthaggi Club put up a worthy grand final total 139 off 43 overs. Not perhaps as many as they wanted but with the pressure on, a tricky target all the same and that’s how it turned out to be.
The hero of the Koony/RSL effort in the field was Ben Perry who took five for 26 off his 10 overs including the initial break-through wicket of Alex Geyer.
Jake Rockall took 3/19 and Jacob Lamers pulled off a fine stumping to get rid of the other opener, Club captain Koby Brann, after he looked set on 22.
Half the job was done by lunchtime but when Koony/RSL slumped to 3/12 in reply, it was very much ‘game on’ and the Club players were up and about in the field.
Alex Geyer and Joel Brann did the initial damage with the ball and it was only when they went off, in line with junior bowling rules, that Koony/RSL was able to come back, and what a fight-back it was with Josh Hastings (50) and Jack Stockdale (43) featuring in an always entertaining, sometimes chancy 91-run partnership for the fourth wicket.
However, having bided his time in the field, Alex Geyer took up the attack again from the clubhouse end. His first ball was despatched to the boundary by Hastings for his 50 but the next one was a snorting delivery which produced a snick through to the keeper… Club was back in the contest again.
Jack Stockdale narrowly missed being run out soon after and then lifted a Geyer delivery to the boundary for four before holing out, off Geyer’s bowling shortly after, to a solid outfield catch by Joel Brann.
When Tomi Brosnan flighted the ball perfectly to chip in with an excellent caught and bowled, then produced another wicket soon after to have Koony/RSL in trouble again at 7/116, still needing 24 to win, the balance had swung Club’s way.
But Jacob Lamers, 18, had withstood the carnage and with Lochie Smith contributing a nice cameo of 8 (two fours), then young Billy Manicaro bravely holding up an end, he got them home via an edgy shot through to the boundary for four.
Lamers was out off the next ball bowled by Joel Brann, leaving Koony/RSL on 9/140 at the end.
The umpires Neil Barnes and Ben Bek did a fine job, correctly and crucially ruling a late run-out chance not out. They praised the teams for their sportsmanship.
Josh Hastings was named ‘Man of the Match’ for his 50 but Ben Perry 5/26 and Jack Stockdale 43 would also have been worthy recipients.
Koony/RSL captain Ben Perry received the cup from LDCA President Russ Matthews.
Under 16 East Zone Grand final
Koonwarra L/RSL 9/140 d Club 139
Result: Koonwarra L/RSL WON FIRST Innings
K Brann st Lamers b J Hastings 22
A Geyer c Lamers b Perry 17
J Schulz c B Hastings b Rockall 13
A Honeysett not out 32
J Brann c Clark b Rockall 2
DT Herbert c Lamers b Rockall 4
J Wade c J Hastings b Perry 36
E Dempsey b Perry 0
T Brosnan c Lamers b Perry 0
H Dobbie b Perry 0
TB Hunter c Perry b Clark 1
Bowling: B Hastings 9-1-0-51, B Perry 10-1-5-26, J Rockall 8-2-3-19, J Hastings 8-4-1-16, C Buckland 4-0-0-13, J Stockdale 3-0-0-7, D Clark 1-0-1-1.
Koonwarra L/RSL-1st Innings
J Rockall lbw b Geyer 8
D Clark b Geyer 1
B Perry c Schulz b J Brann 1
J Hastings c K Brann b Geyer 50
J Stockdale c J Brann b Geyer 43
J Lamers c K Brann b J Brann 18
B Hastings c & b Brosnan 0
M Scrimshaw c Wade b Brosnan 0
l Smith b J Brann 8
B Manicaro not out 0
Bowling: A Geyer 10-3-4-39, J Brann 7-2-3-26, A Honeysett 7-1-0-20, J Wade 2-0-22, DT Herbert 3-0-14, T Brosnan 4-1-2-17.