The size of the South Canterbury District was never more evident than this weekend when only one cricket match was able to be played due to the inclement weather with Celtic travelling to Geraldine to play. After lower grades and junior cricket had all been cancelled, it was left up to the senior captains to decide their own fate. The matches in Timaru and Waimate were quickly abandoned, but in Geraldine although the outfield was longish and slow a full one day match with no loss of overs or complicated by Duckworth-Lewis calculations was able to be played.

[singlepic id=45 w=320 h=240 float=left]Geraldine won the toss and batted first this week as well. They were soon in trouble with the scoring limping to 24-3 before the in-form Matt Barnes and Guy Metcalf set about resurrecting the innings.

English pro Barnes scored his second consecutive fifty of the season while Metcalf improved on his 43 from the previous round as both batsmen scored 56. Bevan Guthrie wasn’t there to hold up an end this week as he returned to his umpiring duties at one end, but young Harry Millar with 14 not out helped Geraldine post a competitive 160-8 from their 45 overs.

Both Barnes and Metcalf will be disappointed that they didn’t bat through the innings and finish the job off properly after doing all the hard work getting Geraldine back into the game, but similarly to the previous week they were both dismissed in the same manner by one bowler. This time it was Jeremy Liddy back for Celtic after a couple of seasons overseas who claimed their scalps on his way to a 3 wicket haul which alongside an unbeaten half century gained him player of the match status.

In the chase Ryan de Joux was quickly out of the blocks with 22 while Craig Davies could only manage 18 this week as Phil Chapman again bowled well to remove both openers. Unfortunately for Geraldine they have a dearth of available bowling talent to support Chapman this season and only Metcalf was able to restrict scoring to any extent conceding 23 runs from his 7 overs. Phil Lill picked up the prize wicket of Dan Laming caught and bowled for 16 during his 8 overs, but by now Liddy had begun to find solid form on his way to an unbeaten 55 which included four boundaries, quite difficult in itself with the heavy outfield. Matt Mealings supported him with 20 and in the end Celtic easily acquired the required runs with 11 overs to spare.

Celtic has now had two wins from two matches, and as there is only one round in the competition this season, are already in a good place at the top of the table, although with points having been reduced in Senior, the advantage gained by being the only game played yesterday is only two points, not 3 as in previous seasons so is not as big a break on the field as Celtic may have liked. All the other teams picked up two points each, which unofficially leaves Celtic on top with 8, Waimate and Temuka next with 6, followed by Star and Timaru with 2, and Geraldine with none.

There is no competition cricket over Labour Weekend, although Temuka will be celebrating their 125th Jubilee with a match against an invitation XI on the Temuka Oval on the Saturday and a Past vs Present Twenty20 match on the Sunday, so pop out and have a look. The Daily Freightways One Day competition continues on October 31st.

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