Clubs Target Finals

History shows form is crucial heading into finals, so while the top four of the men’s Kookaburra First Grade Two Day competition appears to be firm, all eyes will be on how their performances from now until March shape up, as CAM VELLACOTT outlines.

History shows form is crucial heading into finals, so while the top four of the men’s Kookaburra First Grade Two Day competition appears to be firm, all eyes will be on how their performances from now until March are. 

With two and a half matches left to play, tough match ups lay ahead as great tests for the contenders. While Ipswich have close to an unassailable lead in top spot, they are currently in trouble against the Scorchers, Gold Coast play both Norths and Valley, Norths also play Ipswich, while Valley take on Wests and Redlands who will have plenty of star power returning. It will take an incredible effort for either fifth or sixth placed Toombul and Redlands to jump into fourth, however don’t write it off with this tough run home.

Facing their first mini finals battle, Gold Coast performed strongly against the in form Valley side on Peter Easton Oval. Batting first, the Dolphins lost an early wicket before Lachlan Crump (71 off 148) and Hugo Burdon (42 off 80) weathered arguably the best bowling attack in the competition which featured Jack Wildermuth (2/68), Mark Steketee (4/61) and Cameron Boyce (0/53). 

The match stood in Valley’s favour when youngster Saxon Jeh (2/39) caught the edge of superstar Ben McDermott for only 1, Gold Coast 3/65. However, Callum Taylor (120 off 189) (pictured above) and Crump had other plans as they combined for a 102 run stand. The rest of the Gold Coast batters supported Taylor, who saw his side from 3/65 to 7/329. The last three wickets fell quickly, Gold Coast all out 337. With Max Bryant listed to return next week, it looms as being a cracking run chase and opportunity for either side to flex their premiership muscle. 

In Ipswich, the home side welcomed the return of Jack Wood as they looked to continue their unbeaten record alive against the Sunshine Coast. It was a perfect start for Ipswich, Harry Wood (2/16) finding the off stump of a shouldering arms Sam Truloff (2 off 5). Wood had a similar dismissal adjudged LBW soon after, the Scorchers slumping to 3/14. Sean Lutter (1/21) then found an outside edge to have the Coast 4/30. 

Harry Clark-Burnham (65 off 131) and Alex Maidment (63 off 124) provided a century stand for their side before Clark-Burnham was undone by the spin of Noah Emmerson (1/57). 

What unfolded next in the match was quite remarkable. Jack Wood chose to forgo his infamous unorthodox leg spin and came on to bowl left arm seamers. Sending down 12.2 straight overs, Wood took 5/17 as the Scorchers collapsed from 6/159 to all out 188. 

The Scorchers weren’t done fighting, Lleyton Chick (1/11) trapping Bryn Llewellyn in front second ball of the innings. Chad Soper (3/18) and Nick Selman (2/20) then managed to keep the scoring tight and wickets steady, dismissing both Woods and Wilsons. Noah Emmerson (30* off 67) and Jake Cross (4* off 10) are the not out batsmen at stumps, Ipswich 6/64 needing 124 to win. 

There was plenty of feeling in the match between local rivals Toombul and Norths on Ken Mackay Oval. Norths batters Connor Carroll (89 off 160) and Scott Palombo (48 off 87) were in cruise control in their century stand for the second wicket. Carroll continued, however the momentum then swung in the home side’s favour with the dismissal of Joe Burns (12 off 39). Norths then quickly went from 3/160 to 5/174 as both Carroll and Rav Srivastava were dismissed. 

Toombul were able to keep the ascendancy for the remainder of the innings, taking 5/47 to wrap up a tail order who all have First Grade two day centuries. Ronan McDonald (3/57) and Dan Cranitch (2/40) led the attack, while Preston White (1/41) was ultra reliable in his 21.1 overs. Toombul are 0/25 at stumps and will look to carry their momentum into a week 2 run chase. 

Wests returned to their brutal best against Sandgate-Redcliffe on Trevor Hohns Field. A side which has underperformed their high expectations, Wests certainly clicked into gear on Saturday to have a first innings result already secured. Blake Edwards (2/47) Darcy Murphy (1/9) had Wests off to the perfect start, Sandgate 4/27 early. Skipper Adrian Lascu (64 off 76) and Steve Hogan (25 off 50) then steadied the innings to pass the 100 mark. 

Wests captain and everywhere man Steve McGiffin (2/41) then injected himself into the game in a big way, dismissing Lascu and new batter Jet Liebke in consecutive deliveries. Debutant leggie Andrew Henderson then spun his way through the tail, collecting 5/55. 

Wests batters then went on the early offensive, Pranav Susarla (36 off 24) setting the tone before Steve McGiffin (107* off 123) and Jared Sippel (104 off 59) went ballistic. McGiffin sent five deliveries over the rope while Sippel hit seven. McGiffin’s innings was of particular note, taking his side from 1/51 to 5/339 at stumps. 

Souths had a strong day against the University of Queensland, bowling out the home side before seeing through to stumps unscathed. After a solid start for Uni, both Angus Lovell (33 off 52) and Bryce Street (37 off 76) were dismissed by James Rosewarne’s (5/58) leg spin in quick succession, Uni 2/74. Gurinder Sandhu (2/23) and James Ward (2/38) continued Souths’ momentum. Souths managed to collect wickets at a constant, with no other Uni batter passing 25. 

Dismissing Uni for 206, Souths openers Aaron Joby (29* off 70) and Lucky Peterson (43* off 64) saw their side to 0/76 at stumps and needing 130 to win. It will take an almighty bowling effort from University to prevent Souths from victory.

Wynnum-Manly had a good day with the willow against Redlands on Bill Albury Oval. Wynnum captain Jed Wilson (101 off 226) led his side from the front in his season’s best knock. Coming in at 3/34, Wilson mitigated the strong bowling unit which features professionals Jack Sinfield (3/90), James Bazley (2/33) and George Garrett (1/34). 

Grayson Jones (45 off 122) and Harmon Sandhu (55 off 52) provided Wilson able support to help steer Wynnum to 9/286 at stumps.  

The Katherine Raymont Shield also provided a positive result for the Sea Eagles, with Wynnum claiming the win over Ipswich in the only game played due to wet weather.

Leah Dobson (72) stood tall with the bat for the Dolphins, with her knock helping them to 153. Leg-spinner Amreen Kahlon picked up 3-28 while the experienced Delyse Laycock nabbed 2-16.

Wynnum knuckled down in their chase and despite some fine pace bowling from Meg Mettam (3-23), a string of solid efforts with the bat saw the Sea Eagles reach the target for the loss of eight wickets.

KFC Queensland Premier Cricket TOTW 27th/28th Jan 2024

  1. Jed Wilson, 101 (226), Wynnum-Manly, Mens 1st Grade
  2. Connor Carroll, 89 (160), Northern Suburbs, Mens 1st Grade
  3. Steven McGiffin, 107* (123) & 2/41 (8.0), Western Suburbs, Mens 1st Grade
  4. Leah Dobson, 72 (68), Gold Coast, Womens 1st Grade
  5. Callum Taylor, 120 (189), Gold Coast, Mens 1st Grade
  6. Jared Sippel, 104 (59), Western Suburbs, Mens 1st Grade
  7. Jack Wood, 5/17 (12.2), Ipswich, Mens 1st Grade
  8. Andrew Henderson, 5/55 (15.2), Western Suburbs, Mens 1st Grade
  9. Mark Steketee 4/61 (15.2), Valley, Mens 1st Grade
  10. Meg Mattam, 3/27, Gold Coast, Womens 1st Grade
  11. James Rosewarne, 5/58 (17.0), South Brisbane, Mens 1st Grade


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