The latest round of senior cricket again produced some interesting results with all home teams losing as the season continued in a topsy-turvy manner. Although some clubs were affected by the loss of players to representative duty, Geraldine this week contributed to Star’s demise at Ashbury, Waimate had a big win over Temuka and Celtic beat Timaru in a very low scoring encounter.Waimate and Celtic now move to first equal in the one day competition and will make their combined team for next weekend’s Twenty/20 tournament an early favourite, although the return of rep players to the Temuka/Geraldine and Timaru/Star composite teams will certainly have something to say about that.
Temuka won the toss and asked Waimate to bat and after an early breakthrough then had to watch as Alan Reid with 40 and Nathan Sew Hoy 70 put together a solid partnership. A typical Waimate batting collapse saw most of the middle order come and go quickly and Temuka back into the game before Jason Sew Hoy, growing in confidence as the season continues scored another powerful 87 before being run out, and with the support of Matt Devlin (32) had helped Waimate post an impressive 274-8 from 45 overs.
The Temuka bowlers all took some stick but Dillon Lees (3-53) and Taj Bullivant (2-41) were the most successful.
In reply Michael Geddes with a half century and Willie Stone (26) got Temuka off to a good start in their chase, and although Ritchie Preston, Hayden Broker and Dillon Lees got into double figures, Waimate weren’t going to let this one get away easily. Reuben Allan was miserly with the ball taking 3-29, but it was Alan Reid who opened Temuka up by dismissing the first 3 batsmen, and Temuka were eventually all out in the 34th over for 173.
Star’s run of near misses continued, this time against Geraldine who had come to town with their own vociferous and colourful supporters. Star batted first and after an early setback Captain Phil McGregor (39) and Andy McRae (34) added 58 runs for the 2nd wicket to get the innings on track. Geraldine’s bowlers then made regular breakthroughs with Chris Esh with 2-20 having one of his more successful spells of the season. Phil Chapman 3-55 and Guy Metcalf 2-40 were also successful and Geraldine restricted Star to 177-9.
Despite a number of confident appeals by Star, Geraldine got off to a good start with experienced Stephen Pagan 46 and Phil Lill 35 adding 75 for the first wicket. Metcalf continued a good day with 26 and Hamish Drennan with 30 showed how much he is missed when unavailable as Geraldine got through to 162-6 and needing 15 runs from the last 5 overs, what seemed a relatively simple task. However Tim Butler who only conceded 19 runs and Mark Evans with 4-32 from their 9 overs kept the brakes on and as the pressure went on and another wicket fell, Geraldine were faltering and the cold easterly seemed more intense, but young English pro Esh was not ruining his good day with the ball, as he strode to the wicket and batted positively to see his Geraldine team through to victory with an over to spare.
In the third senior match, weakened Celtic and Timaru sides finished early after Timaru were dismissed for 60 chasing 96 to win in a match that certainly saw the bowlers dominate.