By Richard Davidson – Women’s Coach.
Women’s cricket in South Canterbury has maintained its playing levels with six sides including one team from Ashburton.
An increase in teams entered in the Milo Shield primary competition (up by 4 teams on the previous year), hopefully this will see more numbers interested in the game over the coming years. From this competition Courtney Buckman was identified with cricket potential and has been invited to attend elite coaching in Christchurch under the guidance of some of Canterbury’s best coaches.
The Women’s final this year was between Craighead and Roncalli. Teacher, Amber Boyce was the difference between the two sides taking wickets and scoring runs. Roncalli the deserving winner.
Although the Senior Women’s side could not emulate the previous two years in winning the Aotea Cup, there were some notable highlights. South Canterbury finished the season with three wins from their six games, saving their best for last in beating a strong Southland side to deny them from taking the trophy.
Southland batted first and got through to 168/8, Otago Spark Megan Kane hit a well compiled 50. Batting for the home team Rowan Milburn (63no) and Amber Boyce (54) started at more than 7 an over. A quick fire 30 at the end from Lisa Grant enabled South Canterbury to win in a canter.
All team members at some stage contributed to the season with regulars Megan and Hanagh Linton, Libby Stuck, Katie Miller and Bridget McMaster mentoring the younger girls in the team.
South Canterbury u17/Sec School Cricket Tournament in Ashburton 17th -19th December
The South Canterbury u17/Secondary School Girls cricket team travelled to Ashburton earlier this week to compete in the regional tournament.
First up on Monday was Ashburton who won the toss and elected to bat. Ashburton got away to a good start and were on 30 after 4 overs before they lost their first wicket when Christina Burke brilliantly caught and bowled the Ashburton captain. At regular intervals wickets fell to some excellent fielding especially to Rosie Nicholas who took a magnificent catch in close, to break an important partnership in the middle of the innings.
Bowling for South Canterbury, Christina Burke (3-25) Sarah Fahey (3-13) and Amy Jackson (2-13) were outstanding with their control of line and length. Ashburton was finally dismissed for 96.
In reply South Canterbury worked hard for the runs and were not comfortable untill at 59-4 Christina Burke strode to the wicket and smashed the ball to all parts of the ground for a quick fire 49no to end any hopes of a Ashburton win. South Canterbury finishing on 98-4.
Day 2 was against a strong Canterbury Country side which batted first and scored at more than a run a ball. All the South Canterbury bowlers struggled with their line and length and were made to pay by the Country batters. Brown, the opener scored a good century before being undone by a good ball by Meg Bolderston when reaching three figures. Once again Sarah Fahey bowled well taking 1-56 off her 10 overs.
After a good start by the ever improving Mellissa O’Brien and Bridget McMaster (33) South Canterbury lost their way and was dismissed for a meager 67 runs.
Day 3 was against Mid Canterbury again as it was decided to change the draw around to stop Mid Canterbury playing some of the stronger sides.
Batting first South Canterbury got off to a bad start when Bridget McMaster was back in the pavilion with only 2 runs on the board. A good partnership between captain, Megan Linton and Mellissa O’Brien saw the score move to 36 before Linton rather threw her wicket away for a hard hit 22 which included five 4’s. Eloise Niven (41) and latter Georgie Hewson (34) carried the score along to 210 after 50 overs. Batting all but the last two balls of the innings O’Brien finished on 67.
Mid Canterbury struggled to get partnerships going with good bowling from again Sarah Fahey (4-24 of 10) and Amy Jackson (2-14 of 5) and were dismissed for 167 in the 43 over.
Fahey’s bowling and the improving batting of O’Brien plus the captaincy of Linton were the standout performances of the tournament. South Canterbury’s fielding was of a very high standard.
Under 15 Girls
A young South Canterbury Under 15 side competed in the Regional tournament in Timaru. Although they did not win any games there were some very notable performances.
- Hanah Linton 4-13 against Metro Red
- Courtney Hamel’s batting under pressure
- Courtney Buckman 2-20 (Metro Red) and 5-17 (Metro Black)
Many of these girls are reasonably new to the game and came through the Milo schools system. With more coaching and hard training, along with the experience of their first tournament, they will be stronger next season.