Toads crawl past Muddies
THE Port Douglas Muddies C Grade were beaten with only three balls to play in a nailbiter at Fuller Park against the previously winless Mulgrave Toads.
Muddies won the toss and elected to bat on an absolute belter of a wicket but were quickly under pressure when Damien Darlington fell for 2 after having a trademark aggressive swing at the 3rd ball he faced in only the second over of the day.
The pressure was compounded when usually rock-like Keith Taylor didn’t trouble the scorer.
With the score at 2 for 3, opener and skipper Steve Doble and nudger Ben Gaske steadied the Muddies ship.
Gaske supported his captain but found fielders all day with a very steady 41 off 84 balls. The pair added a club record 112 for the 3rd wicket before Gaske was dismissed trying to force the run rate.
This brought Ashley Davidson (8*) to the crease and he used his speed to squeeze out a few more runs with only a few overs remaining.
Doble fired in the later overs, carrying his bat throughout the innings in a superb captain’s knock of 72no off 73 balls, a personal best in his time with the Muddies. Muddies finished with a semi-respectable 3 for 135 from their 30 overs.
The defence of the total started well with Michael Shultz striking in the second over with a vicious in-swinging delivery to have the Toads 1 for 11.
Shultz struck again soon after, supported by a sharp catch taken in first slip by Dan Redfern.
The Muddies bowlers fought hard in the middle overs with the welcome return of ‘‘Golden Arm’’ Keith Taylor (1 for 26 off 6 overs) and Doug Barnes (0 for 28 off 4.3 overs), both unlucky not to have a few more wickets beside their names.
The Toads limped home with three balls to spare, leaving the valiant Muddies disappointed. Muddies B and C grade both play at home over the next two weeks at the Pit.
CAPTAIN’S STAND: Steve Doble batted well