Balgownie claim vital top of the table victory over Helensburgh

Digging in: Dapto's Greg Jones and Tyler Warrington held firm to eliminate any chance of a Corrimal outright victory. Picture: Adam McLean.
Digging in: Dapto's Greg Jones and Tyler Warrington held firm to eliminate any chance of a Corrimal outright victory. Picture: Adam McLean.

Balgownie captain Jamie Fleming has praised his side for fighting hard in their narrow victory over Helensburgh in Saturday’s top of the table clash.

The Magpies faced the Tigers in a 50-over match, with rain washing out last Saturday’s play. 

The game was played under two-day rules, with no bowling or fielding restrictions.

“It’s a great win by the guys,” Fleming said. 

“It was a pretty hard fought game, we went back and forth on a tricky wicket.” 

Balgownie were bolstered by the inclusion of Graeme Batty, with the opener playing his first game since last month’s Australian Country Championships.

Batty immediately proved his value, scoring a patient 77 as Balgownie were bowled out for 185 in the 49th over. 

“I was pleased with the way we batted on that wicket. Graeme showed a lot of patience and experience at the top of order, something we’ve been missing the last few weeks.

“He batted really well and kept us in game.”

Despite the relatively low score, Fleming was confident his side had enough runs.

“With 185, I always thought our bowling attack would be a bit too strong.

“I would have liked a bit more, but it was a defendable total and it played out that way.”

Fleming led from the front, claiming figures of 4/65 off 20 overs. Helensburgh ultimately fell 16 runs short, reaching 9/169.

Tigers captain Mitch McCrae top scored for his side with 65. 

However, Helensburgh struggled to form partnerships around the opener, which ultimately crueled their hopes of a successful run chase.

“He [McCrae] was the key wicket,” Fleming said. “He was struggling to have people bat around him.

We were lucky with Graeme that we had players bat around him, Mitch never had that.

There was pressure always building while he was batting with no one hanging around him, but he batted very well.”

In the round’s other matches, University capitalised on last week’s dominant display to claim an outright victory over Wests.

With an overnight lead of 99, Uni captain Mitch Calder immediately declared in order to push for an outright victory.

Wests opener Tyler Edwards scored 70 in his team’s second innings, however it was not enough, with his side all out for 168. 

University made light work of the run chase, reaching 2/72 in 11.1 overs to claim maximum points and move into fourth position.

Uni leapfrogged Wollongong, who slumped to fifth place after losing to Keira.

Keira resumed play at 0/35 and patiently chased down Wollongong’s first-innings total of 190, reaching 2/203. 

Like University, Dapto entered Saturday desperate for maximum points.

Captain Richard Marsh declared immediately after his side claimed first-innings points.

Corrimal, however, dug in, with Thomas McDevitt (80) and Kurtis Trindall (61) giving the Cougars a slim chance of an outright victory.

Dapto, however, ensured no team would take maximum points, with play called after the Canaries reached 0/76 in 23 overs.  

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