West Pilbara off to Country Cup
Karratha and surrounds has continued its 2016 sporting dominance over Hedland, this time with a comfortable eight-wicket win in the country cup qualifiers to secure a spot at country cup finals.
The West Pilbara Cricket Association team cruised to Port Hedland’s 131-run target off the back of a dominant batting display from Corey Rutgers (62) and Brayden Lee (41no).
Hedland won the toss and elected to bat first but struggled to get a partnership going.
Richard Anderson proved decisive with the ball, claiming 3/24 to have Hedland reeling at 4/40 off nine overs.
Wayne Stokes (42no) and Rajind Panagodage (42) combined for a 77-run fifth-wicket stand to gain some momentum back for the visitors, helping them to a competitive 6/130.
The game unravelled early for Hedland in the field, with two simple catches put down early, which would have seen top-scorer Rutgers depart without troubling the scoreline.
They were made to pay, with Rutgers and first drop Lee combining for a controlled 106-run stand to put the match beyond any doubt.
Rutgers was trapped leg-before with nine runs left to chase down, but the big-swinging Muhammad Khan made light work of the final few runs.
With one win down, West Pilbara squared off against Fortescue Cricket Association to cement a spot at country week.
Again, the home team were put out in the field first but a team effort from the bowlers — each one claimed a wicket — had Fortescue limping home to 7/115.
Looking to chase the total down quickly, opener Cam Nowotny (21) went down swinging, while Rutgers (15) was again out LBW.
Lee (37no) showed a good head, with a mix of traditional shots and kitchen sink-throwing leaving him unbeaten at the end of the match again.
With West Pilbara through to country week, the final game between Fortescue and Hedland was all about pride.
Port Hedland batted first but were straight on the back foot as young spinner Jack Goesch (3/26) ripped through the top order.
In reply, Fortescue openers Jayden Bennell (36no) and Matt Charlesworth ticked off 43 from the target in quick time.
Chris Pilot steered Fortescue home in the 13th over with an unbeaten 24.
Wayne Stokes gets under a ball from Daniel Carse.
Hedland's Lee Irwin puts the ball on a good length to Brayden Lee.
Cam Nowotny skies a drive back over the bowler’s head.