THE Douglas Muddies B grade team (138) nipped the Mulgrave Toads (137) by the barest of margins at Fuller Park, Edmonton, on Sunday to claim their third win of the season.
Chasing a further 87 runs for victory with 9 wickets in hand, the Muddies put on 21 runs at the start of play before losing Sam Hodgson for 27 to be 2 / 72.
This wicket brought Ben Gaske to the crease in his first Muddies B grade game. Ben looked at ease from the start to put on a 24-run partnership with Nathan Taig to take the total to 96 before Nathan was clean bowled. Ethan McCullough and Gaske got to 117 before Ethan lost his wicket for 5.
At 4 for 117, and needing only 21 runs for victory, the Muddies looked to be in complete control and set to make a big total; however, once again, the cricket gods decided to drastically change the game.
Butterss (4), Vikionkorpi (1), and Chizzonitti (0) all fell quickly to be 8-135.
Down to the last batsmen of Sorensen and Johnson, the Muddies still needed three runs for victory.
Tensely viewing play from the sidelines with baited breath, the lads watched as Kaiden clipped a ball off his pads to fine leg for a single, which then turned into two runs as the ball went between the fielder’s legs. Kaiden scampered back for the second to tie the scores up and ready to hit the winning run. Receiving a full pitched delivery outside off stump, Kaiden went for the winning shot with a big off drive, only to take the edge of the bat which carried to first slip, where it was duly put down, much to the relief of the Muddies.
The over finished to leave David Johnson on strike against Etherington. Not wasting time, David scored his only run of the day off the second ball of the over to win the game for the Muddies, receiving a resounding cheer in the process. Kaiden comfortably faced out the over, only to have DJ lose his wicket second ball next over – Muddies all out for 138, winning by just 1 run.
Still with two hours to play, the Muddies looked to have a great chance at rolling the Toads flat and getting some great bonus points out of the game. Claiming wickets in the fourth and seventh overs, the Muddies looked set to bowl the Toads over, however, a slip in concentration and attitude saw a series of catches being dropped.
Butterss and Vikionkorpi both took two wickets apiece, having Mulgrave reeling at 6/148, but at this point five catches had already been dropped (Taig 3, Chizzo 1 and Hodgson 1), helping the Toads’ confidence no end.
McCullough then dropped an easy chance with the gloves which would have had Mulgrave 7 for, exposing the non-wagging tail. Unfortunately, the six dropped catches in two hours saved Mulgrave from being bowled out and allowed them to score 190 from 37 overs, putting a dampener on the Muddies victory.
As the adage says ‘‘ catches win matches’’ – this is never more true than now for the B grade team, which needs to ensure they maintain attitude and concentration if they are to continue to win and look at getting back to the top of the competition.
This is a real possibility with B grade playing the next rounds home game against Barron River (currently are sitting in the bottom half of the competition) this Sunday at 1pm at the Port Douglas Sport Complex Mud Pit. Get down and see some great local cricket action and support your local team.