Wollongong captain Nathan Loveday hopes his team can start to build momentum after securing their first win of the season against Helensburgh on Saturday.
On a day that would have felt like groundhog day for Illawarra cricketers - as all but one first grade game was cancelled due to rain - the Lighthouse Keepers made the most of their opportunity at North Dalton Park.
Loveday won the toss and elected to send the visitors in to bat first. Helensburgh compiled 8/192 from their 50 overs, with Mitch (45) and Hayden McRae (41) leading the charge, while Toby Dodds led Wollongong's attack with 4/38 from his 10 overs.
"We started well, we started nice and tight. But then we dropped a couple of chances and our fielding went in the middle period, and we let them get away a little bit. But once we got them four down, we took four wickets for not many. It was a little disappointing, but in fairness, they did bat pretty well. But we were still pretty confident going into the chase," Loveday said.
"Toby bowled really well until the last over in his first spell, which I think went for about 15. But we brought him back on and he bowled with good patience in his last spell. He used his change of pace really well as they were starting to ramp up a bit. He bowled some slower balls and cutters, and got three for not many in his second spell. He was very good for us."
In reply, the hosts were in early trouble at 1/29, before Kobe Ross and Scott Smith compiled an 86-run stand.
Ross was eventually dismissed for 51, while Smith scored an unbeaten 76 as the Lighthouse Keepers recorded victory in the 47th over with six wickets in hand.
"It was the old bull and the young bull. You had 'Snicker' who is pushing 40 and Kobe whose only 18. The running between wicket was interesting, I think Kobe lapped him a few times, but their partnership was outstanding," Loveday said.
"Kobe showed some maturity and Snicker showed what he can do. He did that role for us in second grade last year, and it's great to see him take the opportunity."
Saturday not only marked Wollongong's first win, but also their first game this season, as wet weather continues to decimate the Cricket Illawarra competition.
There has only been two first grade winners so far, with Wests taking the honours in matches against Corrimal and Balgownie.
"The result was obviously pleasing and everyone's happy, but from our point of view, it was just good to get on the field and I think Helensburgh were the same," Loveday said.
"It was pleasing to get some points and hopefully we can start making up some ground on Wests."
Rain also continues to stall the South Coast Cricket competition, with all first grade games called off on Saturday.
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